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Home schooling

(14 Posts)
routineandrules Thu 18-Apr-13 18:07:00

Hi,
I was just after some advice please. My dd is 6 recently dx'd with autism. She is not doing so well im school. I was wondering if I could take her out of school until september to help her along at home and get her confidence back to where it was whilst looking for a new school that would support her more.
Has anyone had experience of this and am I aloud to do this.
Thanks for reading.

LightAFire Thu 18-Apr-13 20:56:14

I don't have personal experience but yes you can home school - this link might help you: www.ehe-sen.org.uk/

Good luck whichever route you choose! smile

Ineedmorepatience Thu 18-Apr-13 21:03:01

Hi Routine, I have never home schooled any of my girls although I came close with Dd1 and Dd3. When we moved Dd3 to a new school a couple of years ago I had decided that if the new school didnt work I would take her out all together.

I think if I did do it I would have to be prepared to go for it for the long haul as I think that if I took Dd3 out she wouldnt want to go back.

Good luck whatever you decidesmile

zzzzz Thu 18-Apr-13 21:22:56

I took ds out at 7 and HE now. You write a letter to the head saying you are withdrawing and home educating, and then don't go back.

It has been very positive for us, though there are days when I find it more challengeing. Ds is happy.

Read everything you can get your hands on and make sure it is what you really want.

It was about the scariest decision I have ever made.

routineandrules Thu 18-Apr-13 21:33:02

Thank you for your replies.
I hadnt even thought about her not wanting to go back. She prob wouldnt want to go back to be honest.
I didnt think it would be so easy to take her out of school though, thanks for the info.
Im loosing my little girl shes so unhappy.
I have a lot to think about

zzzzz Thu 18-Apr-13 21:37:58

"I'm losing my little girl she's so unhappy"

^^^^^^that is exactly how I felt about ds^^^^^^^

routineandrules Thu 18-Apr-13 21:57:53

Can I ask zzzzz do u think you will always home school now u have taken that route.
The reason I ask is that I have other dcs and would like them to try school as I feel at the moment they may enjoy it. But if they see thier dsis not attending school they may not want to go!
Dd struggles socialy, do u socialise with your ds and if so how? If you dont mind me asking.
It was school photo day today and we had the proofs back, I cried when I saw how she looked on the picture. I cant explain what I mean but I just thought why am I putting her through this every day.

Ineedmorepatience Thu 18-Apr-13 22:06:41

Before I moved Dd3 my GP said she was borderline for being depressed!! She was 8.

When we found the right school for her I got my lovely girl back, her eyes sparkle again and she has loads of energy.

If you want to get her back to school I think you will know if you find the right place for her and once she is at home you will have time to go round a few and get a feel for them.

In some places there is a network of families that get together regularly.

Good lucksmile

zzzzz Thu 18-Apr-13 22:36:34

I don't know if we will always HE. At the moment it is the right thing and there are no suitable schools that I know of near us. If ds was more robust, and I could find a school that would educate rather than babysit him, I would work hard to help him do that. I honestly had got so used to "school boy" ds I am amazed to be rediscovering my boy.

At the moment institutional education is just too hard for him. It equivalent to sending a 4 year old off to university and endlessly dealing with his inability to cope with adult life.

I have 4 other children all at school. Everyone worries about the social side, for me that isn't the hard bit, though that's partly because ds was a mess when he first came home. I find it quite hard to keep going sometimes, no colleagues, no start no finish, no grade/promotion etc.

I can't tell you "to go for it" because so much depends on you and your dd, but my only regret is not saving my ds earlier.

routineandrules Thu 18-Apr-13 22:49:49

Thank you for being so honest. Its just what I needed to hear. I am worried that if I leave it any longer my dd will never come back. I know she needs to leave that school.
You mention that you find it hard to keep going sometimes. I also feel like this now so I worry about making the leap and not coping. But on the other hand we wouldnt be going through the morning battle everyday!
I have looked around lots of schools already and have not yet come across one that is suitable! I realy thought the one shes at now was, I had a gut feeling about going with it. How wrong I was so now I dont know what im looking for in a school.
Sorry to ramble on, my mind is a mess!

zzzzz Thu 18-Apr-13 23:01:41

Is she making progress, socially, emotionally, academically?

What would you teach her?

How confident that you can educate her?

How will you manage illness/family disasters/Drs appointments?

How will you make all your children feel equally loved and valued if one gets so much more of your time?

How does your partner feel about you HEing? Your parents? Friends?

LightAFire Thu 18-Apr-13 23:15:52

Can I just add one last q to those very thoughtful ones from zzzz - do you feel it's the school in general that's the problem, or do you feel she is struggling with a particular teacher this year?

Just asking as you say you had a good "gut feeling" about it initially - and I remember my brother as a boy having a year like you describe, my mum was this close to taking him out, but she hung on and the next year his teacher was great.

Oh also - your DD has been diagnosed you say. Is she statemented?

I've taught in primary for ten years so can give you pointers re schools if it would help at all - just to help you get a full picture of your options? I've been lucky enough to teach in places where they have been very supportive of SEND but I know that is (very sadly) not always the case.

routineandrules Fri 19-Apr-13 00:27:23

I think it is a nice school, but there is so much sensory overload that she withdraws. I think the teachers think shes ok at school she does her work, abides strictly by the rules, is never in trouble. But ive watched her in class, she cant deal with it all not realy. She gets by there and some of the teachers have realy been very supportive. Somethings have been put in place, even though shes not statemented or anything.
She comes out of school grey, shes so serious most of the time never sleeps very well. Worries about everything.
As far as the school go, apart from giving her a ta I dont know what else they can do.
So now I have realy thought about it, what more could I ask for from the school. Things could of been put in place last yr but I have been told that they dont tend to do this until a dx is given.
Zzzz thanks for your questions, I need to think about my replies.

LightAFire Fri 19-Apr-13 12:00:06

Tricky - if she is quiet and getting on with work, then yes they're likely to assume she is ok even though you as her parent know her better and can see she is struggling. Schools can put things in place prior to diagnosis, since it isn't always easy to get a diagnosis done officially (for time and cost reasons, as you've probably already found.) Sensory overload will be a difficult one for them to change though, just by the nature of schools, classrooms, and other children. I have taught autistic children in a class of 30 at a state school, but each child's needs are so different that I think it depends very much on the individual. And from what you say she doesn't sound very happy at all sad

Sorry if you have already considered this, but your other options are independent schools where the class sizes are smaller (although obviously very expensive), or potentially even a special school, although I hear they can be hard to get into. I have also heard from other MNers that the academic levels can be lower in some, although the support and social skills are more suited. However this could be addressed with extra tutoring if needed. The main thing is her happiness and confidence.

The only other thing I can think of aside from home schooling is to look for a very small state primary with no more than one form entry and preferably with small class sizes too. You'd obviously need to be sure that they were highly supportive - best ways to check are to read their Ofsted report and see what that says, and then book an appt with their Special Needs Co-ordinator specifically to talk about their SEND policy, how they would expect to support your DD and what they can offer. You could also ask them about autism in general - what do they see as the main area of support needed? (This will help you gauge how aware and how willing and also able they are to care for her.)

Also, how about ringing: www.autism.org.uk/ for some more help and advice? You could talk to other parents who have been through same, or see what the society recommend re your options.

And I'm so sorry that you and DD are having a very hard time right now, and hope you can find some support!

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