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Looks like DS 12 has to leave independent school

(21 Posts)
mattandnat Mon 03-Aug-09 23:44:35

A bit of background: Ex-DH stopped paying the mortgage on our house (6 months ago) where I live with DS 12. Thankfully I was able to borrow from sister to pay the arrears so we are ok for now.

My dilemma now is that he has also decided to stop paying school fees for DS. I must stress that he can afford to pay for both mortgage and fees but this is part of his abuse towards me (reason why we separated).

He agreed last year that DS would benefit from this school due to DS having had enough upset in his life. DS was not a happy child at primary and I wanted to make up for it at secondary. He has settled in and is happy there. I am angry and worried that he will have to leave. I just don't want any more upset for him. Anyone been in similar situation? ANy ideas please?

sunnydelight Tue 04-Aug-09 04:13:18

He's obviously trying to get back at you and knows that hurting your DS is the best way to do it. Have you got anyone who could mediate, maybe a godparent if your DS has one? A friend of your ex's who isn't such a prat? You need to get someone to get it into his thick head that the interests of his son are more important than petty revenge.

If you haven't got any kind of formal agreement about money, you need to sort something and maybe getting the school fees paid could be part of that so you have recourse if he tries it again. In the meantime, have a word with the school and explain the situation. If they view it as a temporary blip they should be willing to be patient. Lots of people are struggling financially at the moment though so some schools will already have been overwhelmed by requests for help/patience for other reasons.

Are there other family members who could help? (how is your son's relationship with his paternal grandparents? They may be willing to step in if they feel their son isn't doing the right thing).

Good luck.

snorkle Tue 04-Aug-09 11:03:04

Speak to the school. They may have bursaries that can be applied in such cases or know of charities that will cover the fees at least until the end of the next stage of schooling.

bevelino Tue 04-Aug-09 21:00:46

A child is unlikely to be awarded a bursary if a parent (even if separated) has the means to pay school fees. Therefore you may need to place the issue of maintenance and school fees on a formal footing.

Altenatively, family mediation may help ex dh to set aside his feelings towards you and consider what is best for his child.

mattandnat Tue 04-Aug-09 22:35:09

Thank you for your replies. I think the school only give a few bursaries to the top achievers in certain year groups - DS is not one of those kids, he would be top for effort though bless him...

My worry (if I can't get the fees and it is looking that way) is not about which school really that he will end up at, it is more about the move in itself and its effect on ds.

Ex-Dh would no way consider mediation - unfortunately that's another thread for the relationships section!

I definitely haven't given up though, I can't. So I will contact the school. I wonder if anyone is there during the hols? Then if no joy there I will have to contact the LEA asap. Have I missed something vital that I could be doing? Thanks again

Mybox Tue 04-Aug-09 22:40:05

What a horrid thing to do to your ds. Harsh to say this but is there any reason for your exdh to have any contact at all as he clearly isn't bothered about his ds welfare at all.

hester Tue 04-Aug-09 22:48:13

Seems to me you need good advice and soon - CAB?

Yes, I think you should contact the school.

So sorry I don't have any good advice to offer. But I do feel terribly sorry for you and your son - hope you get this sorted.

mattandnat Tue 04-Aug-09 22:51:03

That's ok Mybox, I do know that deep-down but I just can't/won't believe it. I keep saying it is me Ex-dh is getting at, I can't believe he is doing this to our son.

I am trying to be practical I suppose at the moment because there isn't much time (until Sept). Thank you for your comments though because I feel guilty that I sent him to a fee paying school in the first place now.

Mybox Tue 04-Aug-09 22:52:14

Best wishes to you xxx

mattandnat Tue 04-Aug-09 23:03:48

Thanks Hester, DS not aware of any of this yet. I did tell him about the mortgage problem a few months ago in case we had to move out (it was really going that way).

I do not want to tell him about the school problem... I will see where I am with the situation next week before I tell him. Yes I will contact the school.

CarGirl Tue 04-Aug-09 23:04:13

Is there equity in the house to form as part of the divorce settlement? Perhaps you can speak to the school and ask if you can pay them out of the divorce settlement?

mumoverseas Wed 05-Aug-09 10:38:25

Did you not have the financial agreement reached on divorce formalised by a Court Order (either Consent Order or order of the Court following ancillary relief proceedings)

If there is an agreement that he pays the school fees then you should think of enforcing this.

mattandnat Wed 05-Aug-09 11:24:16

Hi, cargirl and mumoverseas,

no we are not divorced or going through the proceedings. And there are no legal agreements in place.

Ex-dh is very hard to track down financially which is why I have not gone ahead with divorce - I believed DS and myself would have ended up disadvantaged.

Haven't phoned the school yet (don't want to hear bad news) Am i being negative or realistic?

I think I should phone a solicitor - will that be a waste of money?? I say that for the reasons above.

VulpusinaWilfsuit Wed 05-Aug-09 11:46:49

Get a solicitor. you can't do anything unless and until you have a legal divorce agreement setting out his financial responsibilities.

FluffyBunnyGoneBad Wed 05-Aug-09 11:49:27

Bursaries are awarded on a needs basis, not on an academic performance basis so it's worthwhile asking the school. Tis scholarships that are awarded on exam results. smile

mumoverseas Wed 05-Aug-09 16:24:54

sorry I had assumed you were divorced as you referred to him as your ex DH.
The fact he is hard to track down financially and is going back on a previously reached agreement is even more reason for you to go ahead with divorce proceedings and sooner rather than later.

Instructing a solicitor won't be a waste of money it will be money well spent to secure yours and DS's future financial security.

I would suggest you look for a family lawyer who is a member of 'Resolution' who aim to resolve relationship breakdown as amicably as possible.

claricebeansmum Wed 05-Aug-09 16:27:05

Definitely speak to the school. IME of friends going through hard times school can be accommodating and helpful.

mumblechum Wed 05-Aug-09 16:37:03

I back up what Mumoverseas says. (High Fives virtual colleague smile)

Also, if you're not sure whether you may qualify for public funding (legal aid), have a look on the legal services commission website. Go to the eligibility calculator, it only takes 5 minutes.

mumoverseas Wed 05-Aug-09 16:40:25

grin at mumblechum
wonder if we could convince the relevant authorities that this counted as CPD? hmm

mumblechum Wed 05-Aug-09 22:14:50


I often go to answer legal threads, read what you've said and realise you've given exactly the advice I would have.

two minds with but one thought!

mumoverseas Thu 06-Aug-09 08:24:21

ditto, you and babybarrister who I haven't seen on here for a while.
Need to do this, stops baby brain setting in completely!

OP, please consult a family lawyer asap and also try to speak to the school who I'm sure will be understanding. A lot of private schools are desperate to keep the kids they've got so may give a bursary just to keep your DS there. Good luck

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