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Statementing question, sorry long.

(7 Posts)
ameliapond Thu 20-Oct-11 11:16:34

Would it be worth asking the school if its worth maybe trying to get dd2 statemented?

Back story is, she is five, and in year one. She has behavioural problems, and has been excluded three times in three weeks due to that, and the fact that they can't bring her out of a full blown meltdown.

She is aggressive and angry, will scream and shout, and refuse to do her work. She is also violent, and has hurt both adults and children in the school.

She was top of the class in reception but is now working with the least able because her behaviour is holding her back. She refuses to do the work set, was originally doing the challenging work, but wouldn't so is now doing the easiest work, but is still hit and miss with doing it. She refuses to do guided reading, and participate in the letters and sounds activities.

The class LSA spends most of the morning with her, but there is no one in the afternoons, so they have to send for another adult when she kicks off which is quite often.

At parents evening this week, her teacher said that it would be easier if there was another adult in the class, not necessarily for her alone, but to be there if she needs her, and to try and keep her focused, but that wouldn't happen due to funding.

She has an updated consistent management plan in place, and the school are having input from the behaviour support team.

She has been like this ever since she turned three, but has always been a difficult child - hated being left, very demanding but it has been getting worse since being at the school nursery. She has had three months worth of play therapy, but that has been stopped as it wasn't working, and the therapist couldn't work with her if she wasn't willing.

So, would it be worth asking the school if this is a route we need to go down, even if we just try to get a part time one?

greenpilot Thu 20-Oct-11 17:58:05

If such a young child is being excluded, I would certainly think she needs a statement. Is she being investigated for any developmental disorders? Meltdowns are often a first sign of issues with ASD.

Have her exclusions been 'official' exclusions - were you given a letter informing you of the exclusion with the reasons?

You should talk to the school about getting her statemented, but you can put in an application yourself as a parent, which is always advised as you know that it's been done. There is a model letter on the Ipsea website - it is well worth looking through their resources as they are useful with all SEN issues. The school may or may not be supportive - it is quite a demanding process with paperwork and they may have to part-fund a 1:1 TA. It is helpful if they are supportive but it is still possible to get a statutory assessment even if they aren't.

ameliapond Thu 20-Oct-11 18:49:56

We did a CAF and CAHMs agreed to take her on, as did behaviour support. Behaviour support are very involved, they were originally only going to support me, but after the latest exclusion, they decided to support the school as well.

We are still waiting to hear more from CAHMS, but I am going to try and get that chased up, as that was back in June that they agreed to take her on.

I spoke to the doctor to try and get something pushed through, and a referral to a peadiatrician, but they point blank refused, basically said she wasn't very bright, and when corrected, said she wasn't stimulated enough. I'd agree if she done the work wand wasn't creating how she is!

She isn't being investigated for anything as yet, although the behaviour support leader mentioned that behaviour like hers can either be environmental, or a condition. They went into her class to see what she was like one afternoon this week, but I don't know what has come out of that, I am going to go and see the SENCO tomorrow morning, if she isn't teaching.

The letters I got each time, I think were general ones, as they are the same each time, just the dates and times changed.

I have heard through the grapevine that it is incredibly hard to get a child statemented here (Essex) and that kind of puts me off, and the Home-School mentor is quite abrupt, and believes that it is all for attention, yet there has been the odd occasion where she has been really good in class. She can't cope with anyone else being the lunch time star, getting head teachers awards, or being the class helper, she will take their stickers off the child, and will call out in assembly when the awards are presented. She will remove the childrens names who are class helpers that day so hers can go there.

lechillycornsilk Thu 20-Oct-11 21:14:42

behaviour support may not be qualified to assess the underlying cause of her behaviour...they are often just teachers with no additional qualifications. Who is the home school mentor? What are their qualifications?
Can you afford a private dx?

ameliapond Thu 20-Oct-11 22:30:28

The behaviour support team are an outside agency. The way the team leader worded it, came across that they can asses her for any causes, or maybe eliminate environmental causes. The home-school mentor used to work for them, but now basically works in the school in various ways.

She is there to help children if they are sad, and calm down the more challenging ones, she does 'rainbow room groups' in various ways, some are aimed at the average children so they feel valued, some sessions are aimed at groups of children who clash to try and work around that. She has a lot of dealing with dd2 because of her issues, she is the one children often go to if the LSA/teacher can't calm a child down. She isnt the SENCO though, but does work closely with her. She also deals with attendance issues.

Unfortunately I cant afford a private dx, and she has been on SA+ since around March this year

lechillycornsilk Fri 21-Oct-11 08:55:00

Definitely chase up CAMHS then - do they know about the exclusions?

soonbesailing Fri 21-Oct-11 09:54:51

Hi ameliapond, well I could have written your post about my DS2 six years ago, so I will start by saying we are in a much much better place now.
My DS was tricky from about 2 and was also very aggressive, frustrated and had massive meltdowns.
We also had quite a lot of informal (illegal ) exclusions, including a 3 month period where I had to take him home for lunch every day, as there was not a TA to support him.
The fact that you school is giving exclusions indicates that they need more support to allow your DD to be fully included.
I ended up having a two pronged approach to find out what was going on firstly through the health visitor and secondly through the school. I live in one borough and school in another, so interestingly ended up with two very different opinions, but thats another story.
He was eventually DX with ASD but very high functioning and since about 7 has been considered as having aspergers, to be honest now he is 11 he is so easy, lovely and able, I almost feel like his condition was developmental, but I am no expert and I had been lead to believe that one couldn't grow out of the spectrum. Anyway...
I would def. make as much noise as possible regarding the (illegal) exclusions, she is being discriminated against and if they are not official, there will not be records of them or that the school is not providing for her. If you can show that they are not able to provide her the education she should be getting (i.e. they say they don't have the staff) then it helps toward getting extra support i.e. a statement, which equates to extra money not coming out of the school budget, but extra money provided to help your DD.
I would speak to the SENCO to see if she thinks statementing is a good idea, many SENCOs are willing to support an application, but it involves lots of paperwork and the school will have to show they have already put in a level of support and that the support given is not working/not enough, therefore they need extra funds to allow them to give additional support over and above the level the school budget can provide for. (that is really what a statement is for)
You can apply for a statement yourself, it doesn't have to be the school that makes the application, but I would find out if the school supports you before going down that road.
Where I live the council tend to reject the first application you put in (they can refuse your application to even asses) so having the schools back-up makes success much more likely, but don't give up at that point if it happens, thats what the council is hoping for and lots of people do give up at that point.
In the early (bad) days once the support was put in place, we found that lots of very positive encouragement really worked, I had to change my parenting style, no shouting, no loosing it and being angry (which was really hard sometimes) lots of rewarding good behaviour, ignoring bad. It was a lot of helicopter parenting for me, making sure I stepped in before a situation turned ugly (and sometimes bloody, especially with his brother who he really hurt a few times with bites and scratches). I became very firm with my direction and kept things simple, there was lots of deep breathing and counting to 10!
His key-worker did lots of work with him about being kind, helpful and sharing and he would go with her to other children in the playground if they were hurt or upset and help to comfort them, it really worked wonders as he got so much praise for being kind and became really aware that being hurt wasn't nice. His key-worker was really patient, calm and kind and she kept him as calm as possible, but we were also realistic, so for example didn't expect him to be able to share a book or even sit right next to another child.
We tried to keep things reasonably calm at home too (not always easy with two small boys especially as DS1 was a really active type) and I did not allow too much play-fighting or crazy running around as I learned that it always ended in tears.
They were many tears on my side too!
But my now 11 year old DS is the loveliest, most well behaved, kind, gentle boy, he is still quirky and tricky at times but I just love him to pieces.
PS be kind to yourself, do not blame yourself smile

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