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DS aged 7, accused of 'inappropriate touching' in changing room. Please advise on what I should do now

(31 Posts)
jaindoh64 Tue 09-Dec-14 06:41:26

Hi

My 7 yo DS has a diagnosis of High Functioning Autism. He recently started junior school, and we have had a few teething problems.

Yesterday the form teacher called me over at home time. She said that an incident had taken place in the swimming pool changing room.

The children are bussed out to a public swimming baths.and use a communal changing room.

Apparently a boy, who I will call C, asked my son to touch his (C's) private parts. DS did, to much laughing and giggling by the other boys.

They were still laughing when they left the changing room, so the teacher asked why, and they told her.

Now it is being looked on as a very serious issue.

I am worried sick that my little boy is going to be blamed for a sexual assault.

There is absolutely NO supervision in these changing rooms. The teacher is a woman, and not allowed to enter. I had to attend a meeting at school last week regarding incidents in the playground.

It was agreed that the TA would give DS extra supervision and he would stay indoors at lunch time.

So how can there be no supervision in the changing room? He is a vulnerable child and I feel he has been put in this position by lack of support by the school.

The school has no Senco, since September, no Head Teacher, I don't know what I should do to protect my son.

The other little boy was not upset in any way, but it's going to be all round the playground today that my son assaulted him.

Sorry to post and run but I have to get DCs up now and go to work.

I'll check in on my lunch break, I hope someone has some advice, thank you

Ineedmorepatience Tue 09-Dec-14 08:10:54

7 yr olds in a changing room by themselves!!! That is the safeguarding issue here not 2 little boys doing what little boys do!!!!

Firstly I would not be sending him again under those circumstances and secondly I would be counteracting any accusations with, if the boys were properly supervised the incident would not have happened!!

The school sounds dreadful, is there an alternative?

Be kind to yourself flowers

LIZS Tue 09-Dec-14 08:19:03

It is clearly a safeguarding issue . Look up the school's policy, contact their nominated safeguarding officer and ask them how they will ensure there is sufficient supervision in future of all children in changing rooms and to protect your ds. Similar discussion will be happening with the other child's family although you won't hear about it nor they your discussions. How is it the topic of playground conversation though hmm

Nigel1 Tue 09-Dec-14 08:36:59

He is 7 years old. That is under the age of criminal responsibility. There is no case.
He is HF ASD his social conventions will be very limited.
It shows how socially vulnerable he is.
He appears to be the innocent party in this.
This appears to be best dealt with by a social story to him explaining in language that he can understand and access what was going on and why it is inappropriate and why you should not always do what friends ask you to do.
The story should be done in a highly visual manner.
It should be done by someone with real understanding of this CAMHS seems a good bet.
Hope this helps.
IM me if it gets desperate.

jaindoh64 Tue 09-Dec-14 08:43:33

Just checking in before work.

LIZS - the other little boys have been chattering about it after school, to each other, and to their parents. Also the class teacher spoke to the other parent in the middle of the playground, not mentioning my DS by name, but loud enough for others to hear. She also spoke to me in the playground, but most parents had left by then. She is very young, and probably not had much experience.

I am going to email the deputy head later. She is also the Acting Senco, but I don't have much confidence in her tbh. I think she has been lumbered with doing the SENCO role.

I have been applying to other local schools, but we are inner city and they are all oversubscribed, with massive waiting lists, so he is stuck with the school for now.

Have to go into work now, thanks for your replies, I'll check in again lunchtime.

LIZS Tue 09-Dec-14 08:50:02

Staff discussing it in public is so inappropriate and against basic safeguarding principles. Good luck with your complaint.

zzzzz Tue 09-Dec-14 11:24:41

Phone up parent partnership and ask them to support you through the process.

I would right a letter requesting an emergency meeting, stating that your child has been used in this way and requesting a full investigation. Cc the governors and LEA.

Your child is the victim here. angry

He should not be being kept in at lunch and unsupervised changing is a safeguarding issue for ALL the children. Especially if there is a sexual bully in the group however teeny and silly.

Be clear in your mind that the school MUST provide access to education (including playtime) for your child. They have plenty of money to do so and can apply for more if needs be.

jaindoh64 Tue 09-Dec-14 13:17:07

Thanks for all your replies.

I sent an email to the Acting Senco this morning, specifically mentioning safeguarding, as many of you suggested.

I also pointed out again, that it is documented in DS's file that he is socially naive and easily manipulated.

She has just rung me, apologizing profusely, shouldn't have happened blah blah blah.

She said she needs to clarify a few things with the teacher who was there. Unfortunately the teacher has rung in sick.

I have asked for any contact to be via e-mail from now on, so that I have a record of what has been said.

His worker from the Communication Autism Team is coming in next week (a long standing appointment), so hopefully she will have some advice for the SENCO.

zzzzz Tue 09-Dec-14 14:20:55

Ask for or find the CAT workers contact email and send him a email explaining. Our children are really really vulnerable to this nonsense and it needs dealing with so it can never ever happen again.

zzzzz Tue 09-Dec-14 14:21:52

Sorry for the right/write thing above blush I am sleepless this week.

Itsfab Tue 09-Dec-14 14:30:24

I am so sorry you have had this happen. Clearly the other boy needs speaking too. Would he ask any of the other boys to touch him or is it just funny to ask your son? sad.

jaindoh64 Tue 09-Dec-14 16:20:26

Itsfab - it's mainly due to issues with this boy that DS spends lunchtime indoors. Scratching each other, pushing each other around, that kind of thing, but DS regards him as a friend.

He has told me a few times that 'C' has 'difficulties', but I don't know if that is true, or whether DS assumes that any child who is 'naughty' has difficulties.

I'm still in close contact with the SENCO at the Infant school, as my youngest DS also has SN, I'll ask her if she can give me the contact details for the CAT worker, luckily it's the same one who has been seeing DS since he started in Reception.

The junior school has been a bit of a nightmare, such as shame as the SENCO at the infants was brilliant - I think she saved our sanity in the early days of school.

Itsfab Tue 09-Dec-14 16:58:59

My child also wants to be friends with a child with difficulties. He has ADHD and this school isn't really the place for him. I have had several talks with the staff and made it clear that my child is not going to just be expected to take the bullying because the other boy has problems. It isn't fair.

I really hope you get the support you need very soon and don't be brow beaten by the school. Your child deserves to be able to go to school without any problems from other kids.

zzzzz Tue 09-Dec-14 18:42:21

itsfab what shocking thing to express! The child isn't at fault, the school is. All children including those with disabilities can attend mainstream school, because disabled people are part of the "main stream". If you don't want your child mixing with all parts ofsociety it is you who should be looking for a selective school. shock

Itsfab Tue 09-Dec-14 19:13:56

Don't be ridiculous. The issue is the school ISN'T supporting the child so he should be at a school where they WILL give him the support he needs. That is for HIS own good. It isn't the child's fault. I want what is best for him, not to get him away from my child hmm.

zzzzz Tue 09-Dec-14 19:29:25

Why have you decided that you know where he is best placed?
Surely the thing to do is get him the support he needs not just move him on?

Jasonandyawegunorts Tue 09-Dec-14 19:40:44

* I want what is best for him, not to get him away from my child*

But you do think getting him away is best for your child, you've just said that...

AliceinWinterWonderland Tue 09-Dec-14 19:42:51

If the school isn't supporting a child, then that is an indication that the school needs to improve their support... NOT that the child needs to be moved elsewhere. And THAT is for HIS own good, rather than the good of the other parents who don't seem to understand this issue properly. hmm

Branleuse Tue 09-Dec-14 19:55:01

you cant get a SEN school for adhd.

insanityscratching Tue 09-Dec-14 20:05:54

You should raise concerns to the school regarding the child not getting adequate support.If you are friendly with the parent you should advise her to do the same. The child in question is entitled to the support needed for him to access an education in the school that he is a pupil at.

PolterGoose Tue 09-Dec-14 20:25:15

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

PolterGoose Tue 09-Dec-14 20:31:23

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MostHighlyFlavouredLady Tue 09-Dec-14 20:38:45

'The issue is the school ISN'T supporting the child so he should be at a school where they WILL give him the support he needs.'

If supporting a child with ADHD is so very optional as you seem to think, why would another school then give him the support he needs?

All children are entitled to be educated in a mainstream school. Mainstream state schools do not get to pick only the cheap kids to educate and provide for. If they don't resource their school adequately for the child to be able to attend on an equal footing then they are in breach of the Equality Act.

They are also obliged to have policies for inclusion and for bullying as well as safeguarding so if you feel they are not following these or they are inadequate and failing this child you must raise it with the school.

A letter of complaint to the school about the level of supervision and support this child is receiving is a good start, as well as any expression of your concerns about how his behaviour might be affecting others due to their negligence. I would expect his parents have been trying for some time to get the school to help and have been ignored and so a letter like this would help.

jaindoh64 Tue 09-Dec-14 21:55:24

I think there's such a discrepancy in the support that mainstream schools are able (willing?) to give.

As I said before, the infant school was excellent. At one stage we were having weekly meetings with the SENCO, daily emails between us, and lots of social stories, sticker charts, fiddle toys for DS. Joint meetings with C A T, counselling, CAMHS.

Then over the road to the linked junior school. All downhill at the moment. The acting SENCO seems a very nice woman, but I don't know if she has any training or knowledge of A S D. I had to arrange a first contact meeting, then we were called in last week about playground behaviour. He was kept in all break time copying words from the dictionary - very useful for getting him to try to play nicely with other children!

I asked my DS to type a report of the incident, rather than try to explain verbally, as he gets mixed up, and he is still adamant there was no adult there.

zzzzz Tue 09-Dec-14 22:29:42

Willing. It's their job, and not optional. angry

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