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Joining a team, is it compulsary ??

(16 Posts)
MrsMorgan Wed 30-Sep-09 09:23:09

DD1 started secondary this Seot. She is the type of girl that always gives things her best and so when they did cross country running for pe last week she came joint 2nd.

She said that the pe teacher said she needed to join the cross country team, and dd said she didn't want to.

She does like to join in stuff and has already joined the after school gymnastics club, put her name down the school production and is eagerly awaiting the schools arts festival clubs starting. Oh and has just started violin lessons there.

Anyway, when she first told me I said that it was a shame she didn't want to do it if she was good at it, but that it was up to her.

Then she gets a note from this pe teacher with the dates and times of practice. It clashes with gymnastics practice. I told her it was fine, not to worry, just explain that she can't do it.

So, the practice should be today. Dd went out early to try and find this teacher to explain that she can't do it.

I then get a missed call from the school on my mobile, ring them back and they said dd had arrived at school upset because she had to do cross country and she'd not got her pe top. I explained that as far as I was aware it was an after schol thing and i'd told dd she didn't have to do it. The secretary is now trying to find out exactly what happened beore dd went to registration and is going to ring me back.

This is the 2nd time that dd has given me the impession that she feels bullied by the pe staff to join things. Apprantly last week they were all told of for not turning up to hockey club, again after school.
I understand that the school want people to join teams and things, but it isn't as though dd doesn't take part in anything, she just doesn't want to do everything.

I am right in thinking that it isn't compulsary to join these things aren't I ??

MrsMorgan Wed 30-Sep-09 09:24:04

Sorry for typos

MrsMorgan Wed 30-Sep-09 09:37:49

Anyone ?

3littlefrogs Wed 30-Sep-09 09:45:03

I do agree with you. The PE staff are desperate for the kids to do everything, but they are only 11, and what with an hour and a half homework every night, maybe one outside activity such as guides/music/swimming, plus one team thing such as netball, the poor kids are exhausted.

Dd is in the same boat re cross country - would love to do it, but just can't fit everything in.

It seems that communication/awareness between teaching staff and PE staff is non existant.

Not to mention the pressure to join the choir and the orchestra.

Dd would love to do everything, but it just isn't possible.

3littlefrogs Wed 30-Sep-09 09:46:09

Have to go to work now, but just wanted to offer my support. smile

MrsMorgan Wed 30-Sep-09 09:49:59

Yes exactly. As I said, dd is very much a joiner and loves to do as much as possible, but obviously she is going to choose the things that interest her over other things, as like you say, they can't fit it all in.

She chose gymnastics because she does cheerleading and it would help with her routines. She chose to learn violin because she has wanted to learn for a while and didn't get the chance in primary school.

PE teachers just never seem to get that not everyone feels the same about sports as they do.

The school haven't rung me back yet so I am still unsure of exactly what happened, but if it is the case that dd found the teacher and that the teacher then still insisted dd take part, I will be asking for the teacher in question to ring me.

needmorehoursinaweek Wed 30-Sep-09 10:01:03

Well I've never had this at my own DC schools. My lads are very into sport but they do other things as well. PE staff have always been very good if they can't make training or game for a valid reason.

Do however have a friend whose DD attends local very sporty private school and they are strict about children turning up for teams if chosen. Many activities are after school and on a Saturday morning. One boy at the school even had to miss part of his D of E silver camp to play in a match. Parents had to arrive very early at the camp. Pick DS up and take him to play in the match. Then they had to drive him back complete with map and ruck sack and drop him off in the middle of a field where the rest of the group were waiting for him.

mumeeee Wed 30-Sep-09 10:58:14

No it's not compulsary to join a team. The PE staff are probably just going a bit over the top and want to get everyone who they think are good at their sports to join.

MrsMorgan Wed 30-Sep-09 11:24:26


Still not heard back from the school, so still don't have the full story.

Dd is supposed to have gymnastics after school today and I am a bit worried that she will go to cross country instead as she obviously feels she has no choice.

Think I will ring the school after lunch and see if they know anymore.

I appreciate that the pe teachers want the anyone good to join their team, but I think they should take no for an answer and not make an 11 yr old feel bullied into something.

michcat Wed 30-Sep-09 12:29:24

Maybe they are picking up the wrong signals from your daughter. If she feels a bit too shy to say 'no thanks I'm busy' they might think she's feeling shy about going and are being 'encouraging.'
Of course they can't make her go... its not detention.
She sounds like she has enough to do after school at the moment so maybe make up some excuses with her in advance for next time they try to badger her into something,ie I've got to meet bro/sis at the primary or something.

MrsMorgan Wed 30-Sep-09 12:35:20

Just spoken to the lady from the pastoral team.

Apparently dd arrived at school in a right state, crying and shaking (she always shakes uncontrollably when she cries). She told staff that she didn't want to go to cross country but she had to.
Why she thought she had to I do not know as I had already said to her that she didn't have to go, but that she should really let the teacher know she wasn't going.

I think dd must have then got scared to tell the teacher.

The pastoral lady spoke to the pe teacher for her, who said it was fine for her not to join the team if she didn't want to.

Dd is now ok and was checked on at break by someone from the pastoral team.

I think perhaps this teacher comes across as a bit aggresive and thats why dd was scared to tell her.

So, drama over, for today anyway lol. Thanks for the replies.

katiestar Wed 30-Sep-09 15:02:35

At my DSs school there is a 'strong expectation ' that you will join a team ,which in practice means compulsory.

MrsMorgan Wed 30-Sep-09 18:13:20

Well dd has just got back from her dads and I have her version of events.

She said she got to school and went to the pe teachers room and knocked on the door. The pe teacher opened the door and said 'don't tell me, you are here to say you can't do cross country'.

Dd then said that she didn't want to do it, and besides she had gymnastics after school. The pe teacher then apprently said 'tough, cross country overides that, go and ring your mum and tell her to bring your kit in'.

That is when dd got upset and the receptionist contacted the pastoral team. Dd also said that whilst she was waiting for the pastoral staff, this pe teacher came out and said 'are you crying because you don't want to do it', amd when dd said yes the teacher said 'getting stressed about nothing'.

Oh and this teacher actually runs the gymnastis club too and so todays was cancelled because she did the cross country club instead.

I am not impressed and have told dd to tell me if she has anyomre run ins with this teacher.

michcat Wed 30-Sep-09 20:07:39

That's outrageous treatment of an 11 year old.
I could understand it if she was a stroppy teen who refused to do pe lessons and forgot her kit every week, but for a club that she hasn't even signed up to???

roisin Wed 30-Sep-09 21:07:47

Crikey! At ds1's (gorgeous) school the PE staff are all pretty terrifying. He's quite confident, but I know he would worry about having to refuse to join their team/whatever. Fortunately for him wink there is no chance in god's earth of him ever being invited to join any team for any sport at all!

MrsMorgan Wed 30-Sep-09 22:20:33

I am really quite dissapointed and angry that dd has been treated like thiis within her first month of being at the school. I just hope it hasn't knocked dd's confidence.

I'm not impressed that the pastoral team didn't relay the whole story either. It has made it seem like they deliberatly played it down for the teachers sake.

Have spoken to dd and we have both decided that for now we will leave the situation be, but dd must tell me if the teacher is at all aggresive with her again.

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