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Bullying in high school.(29 Posts)
My DS is on the spectrum but started at a mainstream high school in sept. He has settled in well and made some new friendships which is lovely.
He has however been horrifically bullied. It started with name calling 'rapist', 'paedo', 'n****r' (he's white) this is because he had longer curly hair. It's now short back and sides as he made me promise to take him and have it cut off.
I pulled him out for 2 days last week as he was physically beaten up unprovoked and I wasn't happy with how school dealt with it.
He went back yesterday. Today at lunchtime I had a incoherent sobbing child on the phone as another kid had beaten him, punched, kicked, strangled and dangled him over a wall, while calling him a stupid cunt. Oh and they opened his bottle of juice and threw it at him.
I went straight up and spoke to safeguarding, and brought him home. I am rather annoyed as he went all shaky in first aid after the adrenaline wore off. Nobody thought to phone and say there had been an incident, it's only because my son called I knew.
They are expecting him back in tomorrow. He says he feels unsafe, and frankly I'm not happy to leave him when I can't guarantee he won't be assaulted.
My question is what would you do? Would you send him? My heart honestly broke for him today, he's got all marks on his neck from being strangled. He actually came and sat on my lap and sobbed, and he's as tall as me. I can't bear his confidence taking any more knocks.
Also to add, he can access 'the sanctuary' at break because of his needs, but his friend can't. And I don't see why he should miss out on break so he can feel like he won't be attacked. He has no statement, but does have an IEP
I would not send him back under any circumstances. Whatsoever. That must have been terrifying for him!
My asd ds is in year 7 and has not made many friends so far, but his only bullying complaint is that someone calls him "pinhead" in science. Your poor boy has been assaulted. Don't put him back in that environment.
This is awful to read. I had exactly the same situation with DS. He's in Year 10 now.
It really peaked in Y8 for him.
Eventually I pulled him out of the school completely. He is in a new school now, which has much better ways of handling behaviour and discipline. It's been a bit of a culture shock to DS in terms of what is expected of him, but he has friends and support with his SEN.
What other options do you have? Are there other schools around? I'd keep DS off if he doesn't feel safe. His school is failing him.
Call the police? There's bullying and there's assault, no?
There is one other I would consider, about 10 miles away. My brother went there and I actually spoke to my mum about it this morning, this was before I found out what happened today. I am considering a chat with the head there. The problem is my son actually loves the school, and his teachers and his new mate that it's just as hard for me to move him. I don't want him to feel punished for being bullied.
I think you need to involve the police and I have never ever said that. He is being attacked. What do the school say? If you have a meeting can you find an advocate - parent partnership etc.
OP. PLEASE PLEASE GET THIS MOVED TO SPECIAL NEEDS CHILDREN. you will get far more advice and very useful contacts. You will get the help and support you need.
Of course he isn't being punished, he's being kept safe. If his school can't do that then you have to.
I will ask for it to be moved, thank you.
I didn't think the police would do anything being that it was in school? I can certainly call and see though. The other kid has got a suspension I believe and his parents informed.
I know I'm a big school there will be incidents, but he seems to be being sought out and he's only been back a day. He's such a soft natured, kind kid who wants to like everyone.
You bring your kid up to be a nice, decent person. You'd think these would be the children that are allowed to flourish, not be too scared to go to school because of frankly bloody horrible kids.
I have told him if he wants to move then we will do that. Protecting him is my priority and I won't be sending him anywhere until I feel happy he will be safe.
Agree about getting the police involved.
But I would speak to the other school, so you know what your options are.
My DS stays with my mum four nights a week now, as it is easier travel wise and she can give him one-to-one support with his homework and prep. (She's retired and lives alone, so she likes having someone around too).
It broke my heart making that decision, it was so hard, but it was the best thing in the circumstances.
I'm not saying for a minute it's right to move your son, but it's good to know what your plan B would be should you need it.
This is so shocking to read and I can't imagine how you and your son are feeling. I also agree that the police should be involved.
How awful. You must be heartbroken. I'm inclined to agree about speaking to the police.
Well I have tried calling the safeguarding officer twice today to be told her phone is on do not disturb and she would call me back. She hasn't.
I will be keeping him off but asking for work to be sent home so he's not missing out too much as he's doing so well.
I haven't contacted the police yet as I was waiting to hear from the school, I will if I don't hear tomorrow though.
Who would I complain to considering first aid never bothered to inform me, nor did student services who took his statement. I also don't know whether to pre-empt the call from education welfare and call them myself explaining why I'm keeping him home. Do you think I should do that?
I would speak to education welfare, personally. If the school isn't calling you back, I would assume they aren't planning on being supportive or forthright. :/ But maybe I'm cynical.
I have the safeguarding officer from school coming for a home visit today. She says the aim for them is to have him back there tomorrow! What can I say to her today about it all, he is unsure what he wants to do as he likes his friend but said to me last night that he feels worried and sad there. I tend to go a bit meek when someone is telling me what I should do so I just wondered if anyone had things I should be asking/saying please.
I find meetings like this difficult to manage too. Is there any chance of you having someone else there with you - friend, DP, member of your family - to take notes and support you?
What helps me is to write down a list of all the things I want to say in the meeting. And then I check it so I'm ticking them off. That way I don't get distracted by what's being said and make sure that I cover all my points.
I would definitely get the police involved in your situation, and record your DS's injuries (take photos). It's completely unacceptable that he's being physically assaulted at school and it's very important such incidents are recorded so they can't be denied or minimised later.
I'd want a plan, in writing and acceptable to DS, of how they propose to supervise their pupils adequately so that an assault can't happen again.
DP is at work and I don't have many others that understand the situation. I am going to write some stuff down, my son text me some stuff he was feeling as it was easier than talking so I'll make sure I get that across firmly too. He said to me this morning he would try going back but I think it's me more than him who's so incredibly concerned about it. He's been beat up by different kids twice in a week and I just don't want him in that situation. I don't care how 'mortified' the parents are frankly of these kids. I think I'm finding it hard to not be a massively overprotective parent, and seperating my maternal protectiveness from everything else.
I totally understand. Totally!
My wee son aged 9 is currently being referred for assessment for asd and if he's not on that spectrum I'll eat my hat with ketchup.
He mostly gets on really well at school as he is very likeable, but I dread high school like you would not believe. I don't give a stuff about my son's very probable asd...he's a cracking lad and I wouldn't change a thing about him. It's the rest of the world I fear and in particular, bloody teenagers.
While I maintain a positive outlook overall, my fear and all-consuming love floors me at times. I can imagine exactly where you are atm and I can assure you I would be feeling exactly the same. I'm never quite sure if I have perspective or not because my maternal drive to protect takes over.
How difficult, if he didn't like the school and had made a friend I'd say to remove him asap. I guess you will have to wait and see what they say when they come over. Your poor son. He must be so scared. And not just the violence, all of it is completely wrong and should not be allowed to go on in school!
He is scared, he didn't sleep well last night so it's clearly playing on his mind about going back. He said he worries as he is constantly expecting something to happen so it's not a surprise when it does. He text me saying he 'just doesn't want to feel sad at school' and it pretty much breaks my heart.
Personally I think the whole culture of high school as a basic is abysmal.
I hate that I have to put any of my kids through it.
My ds1 aged 15 is good looking, friendly, bright, funny and to all intents and purposes should be having an easy time of it...but he isn't. He has hated every hour of it. It's a fucking jungle lorded over by little idiots and is a wholly unsuitable environment for many children to flourish in. It's no different to when I was at high school and the staff pretty much looked the other way.
Getting It Right For Every Child...don't make me fucking laugh.
Mamabear - how is your DS? Have you informed the police?
He is ok, he wanted to stay in that school so is going in until lunch til xmas, then we will have another meeting to see what he wants. I am not exactly happy with how the meeting went so I am still researching options for him, and I've emailed our local LEA. I spoke to a lady on the 101 thing, she didn't seem that interested as it had happened in school and been 'dealt with' but I did suggest that the police went in and had a whole school assembly about bullying and assault and the differences of consequences.
All in all it's still a bit in limbo. DS is still wary, he went in just til break yesterday, and is now taking confidence building lessons once a week. If I had my way he wouldn't go back there at all, I want to keep him home but I'm aware my knowledge isn't great for home ed.
My eldest son was assaulted in first year of high school. Another boy in his class punched him, strangled him and then picked up a chair to hit him with...but was intercepted by the teacher. The boy was suspended for two days then put back into the same class with ds1.
In discussions with ds1's guidance teacher who was actually a lovely man, I asked him how he would react if someone in the staff room say, punched him, strangled him and went to hit him with a chair? Would he be happy to sit and dunk a biscuit alongside that person two days later...and more to the point, would he be expected to?
Well of course not...and he didn't disagree with me. So I said...why do we expect it of teens?
This culture we have of herding teens into a melting pot of anti-social and damaging behaviour to fend for themselves is most odd, don't you think? It doesn't prepare kids for real life...no one goes to their office Monday to Friday and expects to be dangled over a wall, hit with a chair or verbally abused and made a clown of on their way to lunch.
Why do we value teens so little as to allow it to continue?
I am frought with worry about my ds2 going to high school. He's a wonderful child. He doesn't deserve it, but I fear they will annihilate him. Meanwhile the school will bump their gums and follow procedure to the effect of precisely nothing because the very structure of high school creates the problem in the first place.
It's not just kids with asc that suffer. A lot of kids do.
I'd home educate but for the fact that I really don't believe I am capable or disciplined enough to facilitate a credible education. I have considered it for years. It's not a goer.
I wish I had an answer. I just wanted you to know that I understand where you're coming from.
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