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How do you deal with it when teacher just doesn't like your child?

(13 Posts)
youarenotkiddingme Tue 05-Dec-17 18:33:20

Need genuine advice. This has been building up for months and is not a knee jerk reaction to one event.

Ds has a teacher who is becoming less and less subtle of her intolerance for him. Ds has ASD and an EHCP so his difficulties aren’t a secret and should be well known by staff.

The subject is one ds love(d) and has always been above expected progress in. A few months ago he crossed it off his timetable and that was my indication things weren’t ok.

I know he was leaving the lesson frequently and I talked him through events at home.
It is clearly documented that ds cannot invent stories - he will give facts and can report everyone’s roll in a situation as he’s anxious and hyper aware. School admit he’s never instigated any physical situation despite him being physical when provoked.

Having spoken to teacher she said “well, ds does x y and z and is equally as bad as child he had issue with in lesson”. When asked for specific examples of what ds has done she could give none beyond “he’s annoying to his peers”. Further investigation annoying is basically his poor social communication and reading of social cues which is directly related to his disability.

There is a child in the class who is known to target ds. Staff have been told to keep him away from ds. Yet this particular teacher puts ds in detention every lesson for something this child has reported ds has done. Not done to him - but just done in general.

One example is this child was handing out the books. Ds didn’t get given his so outs his hand up and asks if she knows where it is. This pupil and his friend (who has been punished before for picking on ds) say “boom is here on floor as ds threw it”.
Ds says “I didn’t - you know I just asked you where it was”.

But teacher always says “it’s your word against 2/3/4 others so I believe them”.

Hoy was worse than useless as well when I’ve tried to address it.

I’m gutted because this school has been so good up until now but ds is predicted to make no progress from now to gcse in his science grade despite his target - and it’s all because of x y and z - things he’s reported to need support with on his EHCP.

Its taking over his life again causing such bad anxiety but I don’t know how to approach it to get them to realise the teachers personal feelings of ds are the barrier to improving the situation. sad

catkind Tue 05-Dec-17 18:49:53

Have you tried speaking to SEN lead?
Otherwise I guess move the next step along the complaints procedure. Making sure you have as much documented as possible and as neutrally phrased as you can.

IJoinedJustToPostThis Tue 05-Dec-17 18:59:54

I'm not sure from what you say that the teacher dislikes your ds. The problem could be sheer ignorance of autism and issues around it (eg increased vulnerability to bullying).

Obviously that is not ok. As pp said, document everything, start working your way through school complaints procedure, push for more autism awareness training as your ds' needs are not currently being met.

All that said, I have met a teacher or two who've said things like "If I wanted to work in a special school, I would" and I'm not sure how easily such attitudes can be changed, unfortunately. How big is the school? Is moving classes an option? Of course, that shouldn't be the solution because the problem is not your ds, but it may be swiftest/most effective.

youarenotkiddingme Tue 05-Dec-17 19:04:42

Not spoke to head of inclusion.

It’s complex because ds transferred here after last school failed him and then a pupil threatened him with a knife in class.

Unfortunately the party line was “it’s all mums fault” from old school which la played on to avoid issuing EHCP - even when ds couldn’t attend school for anxiety.

He has EHCP because it went to tribunal and judge ripped la and academy to shreds ordered them to assess and when la said they wouldn’t issue even if ordered to assess judge basically said if it went back to tribunal he’d order to issue as any child not attending school needs support.

I’ve held back since then afraid to approach school when things aren’t right. I fear it’s then my fault this has escalated because I didn’t intervene earlier (afraid of ds being driven from another school).

Thing is - I know ds is no angel. I know he’s hard work and challenging at times.
And if all teachers said same as this one I’d be 100% on board with it. However all but her say how he’s smart, funny and polite but struggles with peer interactions, focus and concentration.

She basically says he’s a trouble maker, liar and a danger in the classroom.

Btw I know the events ds reports to me are true. For example - the book one she agrees it happened as ds reports except she doesn’t believe ds asked because he didn’t have it - she believes the student who says he threw it - even though she admits she never saw him throw it.

Same with the 3 times his stationary got broken. She disbelieves his version of events that x student did it, admits whatever happened stressed ds as he fled from classroom sobbing - and admits she has no idea what actually happened - other than she doesn’t believe ds.

Yet NEVER has ds lies about his involvement in anything and will 9/10 offer the information he did X (x being something not acceptable!) in response to a situation.

catkind Tue 05-Dec-17 22:29:46

I don't think you should be put off by having past bad experiences, especially where those were at another school.

It's a really good sign that other teachers do understand his behaviour - both the positives and the problems. Is there someone there that you could ask to join a meeting with the teacher he's having problems with? Form tutor? Previous teacher for the same subject? Head of department for the subject if they've had any contact with him? Obviously head of inclusion would be ideal, what sort of relationship do you and your DS have with them at this school? Is it this school that were trying to refuse an EHCP or previous school?

youarenotkiddingme Tue 05-Dec-17 22:56:28

Previous school were trying to refuse EHCP. Not that they have any say iyswim but they weren’t putting in any support to prove it wasn’t working so they disputed need and said it was all in my head.
Obviously at tribunal I had another person who could question their stance when Camhs referred him for CBT for school related anxiety because he was self harming. (School said I was just making anxiety up).

This school were always good. I’ve known that there’s more he could have if I was on top of EHCP but also know being that parent can cause relationship breakdowns so as long as ds has been as happy as he will be in school I’ve let a lot slide.

The current school were basically tricked into taking him I think - he officially went on a MM. I don’t think they realised the things they accused me of “exaggerating” actually were true and were a little taken aback when in week 3 ds tried to put his head through a glass window blushshock.
He has come on MASSIVELY since then but the HOY just played the “you’ve been so happy with school and progress ds has made up until now” card when I raised concerns about this lesson, his relationship with teacher and his lack of progress.

It’s like the door face slam sad

Thing is NOTHING will improve all the time ds is in this class with this teacher. He is convinced the teacher favours the other pupil who picks on him. And nothing will change because this is disputed and all ds faults are listed as a defence to show he’s not perfect.

The effort NEEDS to come from the teacher. She’s an NT adult and ds is a teenager with a disability meaning he can’t navigate this type of situation.
I’ve tried to guide him to show her he’s not the person she thinks he is and given advice, done role play etc.

How can I get them to understand there’s no smoke without fire and ds feelings don’t come from no where - and until they acknowledge those feelings they’ll just make him more anxious.

I know senco to talk to and spoken to HOY. Also spoken to teacher directly.

HOD maybe a good start? Had ds report today that says target grade 6, predicted grade 4. Year 8 exam he got a 4! So I could maybe just ask from a department POV what their plan is to ensure ds reaches his full potential in the subject and reaches his target grade? But I just get the feeling the reply will be he needs to behave. So we are back to this teachers opinion of him iyswim?

Fffion Tue 05-Dec-17 23:07:02

It might be a case of “don’t believe everything your child says about school, and school won’t believe everything your child says about home”.

Why would a school not want an EHCP?

Is there an independent school in your area that could cater for your DS’s needs?

youarenotkiddingme Tue 05-Dec-17 23:29:12

This school didn’t ever refuse to support EHCP. In fact I think they were instrumental in getting it as he was here when it was issued and they kept asking how I was getting on with it.

I don’t believe everything ds says as standard as I know he misunderstands situations. But ds cannot make stuff up. He doesn’t have the social or cognitive skills to do so - that was documented by ep and Camhs and specialist teacher adviser - it didn’t come from me!

The situations that ds has reported have been confirmed by teacher. She admits she hasn’t witnessed them. But says she doesn’t believe ds version because the 2 children who are known to pick on him give different versions.

One incident is where the other child left his seat and table and walked over to where ds was sat and hurt ds. Ds hurt him back when defending himself. No question ds version couldn’t be true as ds admits and told me openly it had happened.
I asked teacher how come it is that ds is being punished (again!) when it’s the responsibility of school to have intervened BEFORE the child got to ds.
She said she didn’t see what the other child did to ds but believes the version of events of the boy who intentionally walked across the room to hurt ds over ds version of events.
She cannot see the problem with this and continues to allow this student to dominate her decisions because whatever he says ds did she believes him. Despite admitting she hasn’t witnessed anything and despite school saying none of it tallies with how ds behaves. (Eg ds has never deliberately done something naughty).

I’ve said upthread he’s no angel - but i know ds very well. I’ve been his carer for 13 years.

La absolutely WILL NOT pay for independent placement. They refused to assess for EHCP for 6 months whilst ds was out of school because “school could meet need” hmm

Tissunnyupnorth Fri 08-Dec-17 11:42:14

Would a change of set to a different teacher help? Maybe you might get a more positive result focusing on a set move rather than getting a teacher to ‘admit’ to treating your DS differently/unfairly?

youarenotkiddingme Fri 08-Dec-17 16:49:51

Believe me I’m smarter than to accuse them of this outright!
By to move him I need to justify it. He’s middle set and really more able than teacher will allow him to be (but LD which affects written work).

I emailed Senco and just asked what school could do to support him as he’s so anxious about this lessons and teacher, is convinced she hates him and hasn’t the skills to turn it around. I pointed out they were predicting no progress and to get a 4 at gcse when his target is a 6.

I’m waiting to see what they say.

youarenotkiddingme Mon 11-Dec-17 17:00:51


I sent email last week asking how school could support ds.
He went to LS today refusing to attend the lesson. Took 10 minutes to persuade him - he turned up to be told he’s moving to another class - the teacher he had last year - which is technically moving up.

The change in ds since school today shows me just how** much this has been affecting him.

He actually said he can enjoy science again now. grin

catkind Mon 11-Dec-17 18:31:10

Great news smile Hope it makes all the difference for him.

IJoinedJustToPostThis Mon 11-Dec-17 19:45:42

Good stuff smile

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