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incontinent child being excluded from trip.

(45 Posts)
ashamahay Fri 15-May-15 12:04:48

My yr six child is due to go on a five day/four night trip with the school. I had a talk with head teacher and was told they didn't feel it was possible to take my child due to their incontinence. My child has been listening and talking about it in school and is so excited to go but now I have to say no.
Is this right. Can they refuse to allow a child who has a medical condition which causes incontinence go on this trip? I can't even take them out of school for the week to make up for it without getting fined. Any advice on how to deal with this situation would be appreciated.

Cookiecake Fri 15-May-15 12:09:07

How do they usually deal with the incontinence at school? I suppose if it's going to create a big problem when going away I can see why they maybe feel that it would not be appropriate.

That being said I'm not sure why if they deal with it at school why your child cannot go, it seems really horrible that they might miss out. It must be horrible for you with your child being so excited about going, I would probably try to reach some sort of solution with the teachers as it doesn't seem very fair.

PandaNot Fri 15-May-15 12:17:48

No, they can't do this. Is there an individual healthcare plan in place for your child? This has been a requirement for quite some time now. There is absolutely no reason why they can't make 'reasonable adjustments' to enable your child to be cared for appropriately so that they can access everything along with their classmates.

angelos02 Fri 15-May-15 12:19:46

Could you go on the trip too? (to look after your DC obviously).

ashamahay Fri 15-May-15 12:21:15

The school has a carer for school time as the care plan states that child must be assisted to clean every couple of hours. It's hard as I can see where the school is coming from but I can also feel my child's pain. The school keep talking about it in class and EVERYONES going except my child. I broke the news that they couldn't go this morning and the reply of 'that's not fair I hate my problem and I hate you for making me this way' broke my heart. When they all go and my child's stuck in year four class I can see that being a hard week for us.

ashamahay Fri 15-May-15 12:22:22

I can't go as I have two other children and no childcare help. Would love to go as it really does sound like fun.

PotteringAlong Fri 15-May-15 12:25:27

No, they can't exclude her because of it. You need to go and hatch a plan with the school of how to include her. Is the carer going on the trip?

ashamahay Fri 15-May-15 12:26:38

Because of the fact it's faecal incontinence nobody wants to deal with the poo for a week it's taken the last four years to get a carer that was willing to follow the care plan in place but sadly they can't attend this trip. It's a tough call for the school as I think they know that if they don't keep child clean it could cause serious illness and they don't want to be responsible for that.

Iggi999 Fri 15-May-15 12:28:31

Can you think of ways for the issue to be managed on the trip? Presumably the same as how you manage at home?
I am sure whatever that requires would count as a reasonable adjustment. Your dc has a protected characteristic and the school really does need to be careful they do not discriminate. I have specifically seen not including a disabled child on a trip used as an exemplar of contravening the equality act.

Iggi999 Fri 15-May-15 12:30:51

They will need to employ someone else to fulfill this role for the trip then. Tell them if they fail to provide reasonable adjustments for your child they are discriminating under the terms of the 2010 Equality Act. (Assuming you are in the UK!)

PotteringAlong Fri 15-May-15 12:32:14

They might not want to be responsible for it but, legally, they have no choice. It depends how far you want to push it really and whether you want to end up with ill will with the school because of it.

Roseformeplease Fri 15-May-15 12:32:14

I am in Scotland and the rules might be different. However, we had something similar at a nearby school and the school was told that EITHER the trip was accessible to everyone, or it did not go ahead as it was in SCHOOL time so must be compatible with the needs of all pupils.

I run school trips and anticipate this kind of thing long before we even discuss the possibility of a trip with pupils and parents.

You should have a very strong case but I am not sure how this can be resolved at this late date.

Iggi999 Fri 15-May-15 12:32:50

You could phone the Equality Advisory and Support Service for advice : Phone: 0808 800 0082

MythicalKings Fri 15-May-15 12:35:24

Maybe they have tried to find someone and they can't. I would hope so. Maybe they thought they had someone but were let down.

But if there is no one willing what can they do? It doesn't seem right to cancel the whole trip.

What sort of activities are involved, OP, that may be a consideration?

holidaysarenice Fri 15-May-15 12:36:28

Knowing your individual circumstances can you give any possible plans to the school? Then if they turn it down it truly is discrimination.

MovingOnUpMovingOnOut Fri 15-May-15 12:42:51

That's awful. I agree a trip for all or no trip. Poor kid sad

I am a bit surprised you're trying to "see where the school is coming from" when they are discriminating against your child for a disability and I would class this from what you have saud as a disability as per the Equality Act. Why are you trying to empathise with nasty discriminating behaviour? You need to go in to bat for your child.

Are you in UK?

Iggi999 Fri 15-May-15 12:43:17

They could employ an agency care assistant. I imagine they have asked among the staff and got a no, that will be all.

ashamahay Fri 15-May-15 12:44:37

The care would be the same as in school but for extended hours as they are going for five days. I asked if they had any specialist toilets at the camp but head teacher had not enquired. It just seems like they don't know how to plan the trip. I really thought they would have asked for a meeting with me to discuss a possible care plan before it was suggested that child couldn't go. I will try and get a full merting but like I said before it took four years and a lot of arguing to get a capable carer so we shall see what happens. Thanks all for your advice/replies.x

Gigglenhoot Fri 15-May-15 12:45:05

The Disability Descrimination Act states reasonable adjustments must be made. Ask to see the schools SEN and Supporting Medical Needs policies.
What things could be done to accommodate your child and make it easier for them and the staff? Going back to the school with some reasonable suggestions should help.

ashamahay Fri 15-May-15 12:52:32

Movingonupmovingonout. I know what your saying. I am livid about it but I would rather my child not go if they really can't be bothered or see child as an inconvenience. I receive carers and dla for my child so yes your right it is a disability and they should be bending over backwards for us but in practice my child also has emotional and behavioural problems due to the condition and finds it hard to cope with change and certain people's attitudes within the school really don't help.

Iggi999 Fri 15-May-15 12:56:07

I would forget the school here and contact the authority/council education department and say the school is discriminating against your child. From what you have said about the "planning" I think they definitely are. You might find things move more quickly then. It would be better that they fix this than that you take out a case against them afterwards.

MovingOnUpMovingOnOut Fri 15-May-15 13:00:24

I understand. Actually as soon as I posted I thought you're probably just bloody sick of battling on.

As your child is year 6 and there's not a huge amount of term left could you just take him/her out and "home school" until the end of the year?

If you feel up to it, a complaint to the governors that your child is being deliberately excluded from a residential trip due to disability and that you are considering legal action would probably be your escalation point if you did decide to fight.

MythicalKings Fri 15-May-15 13:00:46

What sort of activities will they be doing, OP?

guggenheim Fri 15-May-15 13:10:31

Really poor behaviour from school. Why haven't they checked to see if there is a specialist toilet??

Schools begin to plan residential trips well in advance and must take the health/ safety/ needs of children seriously. The head should know all details of the trip,even they aren't going with the children.

There are ways to make this work- actually this is doing my head in a bit. I'd be very surprised if a residential building didn't have facilities for children with additional needs.

Also they should have the balls to tell her themselves not leave it up to you to have to break it to her. Poor girl!!!!

Please ask them what provision they have made for her is they will not allow her to attend? I also assume that the school will not be doing work based around the school trip during the rest of the term????

FFs they could have made this work or failing that they could have consulted with you every step of the way so that some compromise could be made. I'm so sorry.

Viviennemary Fri 15-May-15 13:11:04

I think the school is legally in the wrong. They are not allowed to discriminate like this against a child because they have a physical disability. He is being excluded because of a disability and that is not legal. I agree with forget the school and contact the Local Authority directly.

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