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(14 Posts)
tabulahrasa Thu 08-Sep-11 09:28:01

and I know it should be on there, but I don't want to attract the - you should think yourself lucky - brigade.

DS can't write legibly, at all (he's 15) so he types, he had an alphasmart at primary loaned to him by the LEA, which he took with him to secondary.

They then decided he was to use a netbook, so that's what he's done for about the last two years. It's currently broken and has been since just before the endo of term. (wwe're in Scotland so he's been back a few weeks now)

He's come back with a form last night that we've to fill in agreeing that he won't misuse it, let anyone else use it and that if it needs parts or labour, we'll be charged for it.

Now the AIBU bit - I've sent a note back saying that I'm more than happy to sign something saying he won't misuse it, I'm not happy t sign something that says that I will be financially penalized because DS needs the computer and can they confirm in writing that this only applies if it's been misused. Is that just me being nippy?

I'm a bit hmm about the whole thing really, he's not using it out of choice! and apart from anything else, I'm fairly sure it's on it's third power cord and it seems to break down and have to be sent away every 4 months or so.

IndigoBell Thu 08-Sep-11 09:40:41


But pick your battles. Is this one worth fighting? Will it cause you financial hardship?

Because there is a toll on you and your family with every battle you fight....

BakeliteBelle Thu 08-Sep-11 09:42:09

No harm in asking though...?

tabulahrasa Thu 08-Sep-11 09:47:49

IndigoBell - honestly, no it probably won't matter financially, it just made me go angry

He needs it for his exams, they won't let me send him in with my laptop - so if they insist on it, I'm going to have to sign it so he can get it back.

I just want them to know how unfair it is, <sighs>

But I was fairly fizzing when I wrote it so I wanted a second opinion, lol.

coff33pot Thu 08-Sep-11 09:54:46


If it was a laptop I would say it wouldnt be so bad as they have a good track record if not misused and I have had mine for 6 yrs.

However NetBooks are renowned for just conking out. I have had 3 for my eldest they only need a virus to cock them up (which we got when transfering data from main computer to netbook). There is no place on them to put a disc in to reload lost information and so we had to buy another,as everything is stored via the company and the cheapest one I have bought was £139. The third one has limited storage and I have an extended hardrive for her to store work so she wont lose it if this one gives up.

tabulahrasa Thu 08-Sep-11 10:13:33

Yeah it's been out a couple of times because of viruses - and he only uses it for school work, at school. He does homework on a PC and it's no use for much else even if he wanted to use it, lol.

He'd be so much better off with a laptop, he uses it because of fine motor control difficulties, so he's got this tiny thing with tiny keys which seems to break if you type too hard, which of course he does, lol,...I know it's a cost thing, and it's better than the alphasmart for him, but it seems a bit silly that he can't just take in a laptop given that we have one.

It's just all ridiculous, he needs a computer, I have one here he could use, but their policy is that he can't, so he has to use their netbook and now they want to charge me if it breaks? hmmph

It's not a terrible school overall, they support him fairly well (they could do better) but it's a never ending round of stupid little things like this that really bug me. When it's something really important I go down and harrass the head till it's fixed, but it seems like there's never any end to all the silly wee things as well, usually I just save my energy - but I'm annoyed about a couple of other things at the moment and this was just a, no, no, I'm not happy.

StarlightMcKenzie Thu 08-Sep-11 13:09:00

It's a DDA issue I'm afraid.

Do other children get charged for misusing school equipment? Yes

Do other children get charged for general wear and tear of school equipment? No.

Children do not get charged when book covers fall off, when a beaker breaks in science, when a cookers back ring stops working.

They are acting as if your ds' piece of equipment is some kind of luxury but it is as essential for his education as football nets are and I doubt any child has been charged for the replacement of those.

StarlightMcKenzie Thu 08-Sep-11 13:09:39

Ignore me. Football nets aren't essential for anyones education - but you take my point.

tabulahrasa Thu 08-Sep-11 13:24:07

I know what you mean, I think that too.

Which is why I sent the note in, just as an - oy, you can't do that.

Like I said if they insist I really have no option - well I could just bury them in a nice flurry of letters about every single thing they do that I think is wrong like the fact that they keep refusing to put his AS and other needs on his data form as a disability, I keep putting it in and they change it to just - There is medical information hmm probably because if they acknowledge it as a disability they then have to do the umpteen other things I want to send notes in for, lol.

They have a fantastic relationship with me, can you tell? grin

Agnesdipesto Thu 08-Sep-11 14:33:57

If he misused it because he had behaviour issues due to a disability etc then charging even for breakage would not be ok imo. I have refused to sign a school behaviour contract for a 5 year old which says things like he will always open doors for others, he will always say please and thank you / be polite etc because he does not have the language or social skills to know how to do these things or why us NT people even think they are important. If he is capable of taking care of the equipment then sign it for misuse; but you are not liable for wear or tear.

tabulahrasa Thu 08-Sep-11 17:20:06

Oh he's a bit clumsy, but perfectly capable of knowing what not to do with it.

I got a letter back saying it's a legal thing that they have to have signed before they lend out equipment.

<is deciding whether she can be bothered getting really annoying about it>

tabulahrasa Thu 08-Sep-11 18:24:46

oh - and...

The IT man used italics and bold at me angry all patronisingly <may perhaps just be being petty now>

zzzzz Thu 08-Sep-11 19:56:29

I find "it's a legal thing" totally infuriating in itself with or without inappropriate boldy-italics. Hits me a bit like "it's our policy". As I have sweetly pointed out to a head teacher in my time, the law is their to protect children and the disabled.

Personally I don't think it is wrong that you are expected to maintain the equipment but they will provide it. I would say it was an excellent example of where DLA should come in. On the other hand if the school are given a budget for sn then surely it could come under that instead/too? I would ask how it works. I don't think that's rude, just thorough.

maddiemostmerry Thu 08-Sep-11 20:39:25

My son has one at his secondary school, we have never been asked anything like that.
I can't see how they would enforce it.

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