Hi - this is my first post on mumsnet and I need advice! I have just received a letter from my 14 year olds school to say that following tests in 2015 and 2016, he qualifies for exam access arrangements and will get 25% more time for all exams and a laptop.
My issue is that at no point in his entire schooling has anyone ever suggested that he might have some form of Sen. We also didn't know from school that he had been tested. He is bright and in top sets but not achieving his targets. He has always been disengaged from school, and often doesn't bother with homework. School have had us in several times over the years but only re discussing how to motivate him, never about him having any needs. I'm feeling pretty upset and for once so is he. He's asked why does school think there's something wrong with me? Can anyone shed some light?
He could just have slow writing speed So he doesn't get to demonstrate his knowledge within the usual time given. Ask for a copy Of the tests they have done. It doesn't necessarily mean something specifically wrong. We test loads of our students prior to GCSEs to see if they qualify.
One the one hand - having a laptop and extra time is not to be dismissed and may well be invaluable. Certainly my (Dyspraxic) son wouldn't have had the academic success he's had without access arrangements. Don't make any knee-jerk reactions to this.
On the other hand it is absolutely dreadful that they haven't kept you informed in any way, and have been assessing him on the basis of some issues you knew nothing about - presumably you've had parents' evenings and reports, etc, in which they could have shared any concerns. Ring the SENDCo in the morning and ask why it's got to the stage at which they're making access arrangements without any discussion with you. I can't quite get my head around how shit this is.
And re your son - they think he has an additional need. That's not in any way the same as thinking there's "something wrong with him". Would that help him get his head around this?