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Refuse to make financial sacrifices for DSS

(870 Posts)
usernc76482 Tue 19-Jan-21 03:04:49

NC but regular poster. Cannot sleep as I'm drowning in a sea of anxiety.

I'll keep this brief: we (DH and i) can no longer afford to send DSS (Yr 12) to private school. ExW and husband comfortable but I don't think in a position to pay till he finishes secondary education next year. ExW and husband also have DC together who are also at the private school), but I mean, why would the step dad pay for his step son to go to private school when that is my DHs job and part of the original court order? ExW does not work.

At the same time, our DC1 has started at private pre prep (Reception) in September last year. It's looking unsustainable being able to send her there now and we will have to pull her out next term.

We could afford to send one or the other but not both children.

So: we COULD continue sending DSS to school if we take our DC out. I just don't think that's fair? If the children's are going to suffer it should be all of them?

It's been a very financially rocky few years but we had made it work, sold our car, no holidays etc. to continue sending DSS to school. We rent so cannot get a loan or anything against a property.

I'm fed up of making sacrifices.

OP’s posts: |
Seafog Tue 19-Jan-21 03:08:02

The line where you said it was part of the original court order caught my eye. It sounds like he would have to go to court to change it

frazzledasarock Tue 19-Jan-21 03:16:09

Will he be able to get into another college/sixth form in his final A level year to finish his A levels?

Also as it’s a court ordered payment for school fees, can you’re husband simply stop paying for school fees?

It’s this academic year and next year then your husband won’t be paying for his sons school fees. It could potentially screw up your DSS’s A’Levels if he’s pulled out in his final year.

Is your husband wanting to stop paying his sons fees too?

SherryPalmer Tue 19-Jan-21 03:17:39

It would be really bad to pull DSS out in y12/13 when he has one year left. Pre-Prep isn’t really necessary - your youngest will be fine staying in state education until y3. It really won’t make a difference.

JamieLeeCurtains Tue 19-Jan-21 03:18:03

Do you - all the adults - have the sort of relationship where you can talk it through?

fairlygoodmother Tue 19-Jan-21 03:23:02

If he's year 12 I actually think it would be very disruptive and difficult for him to have to switch schools half way through his A-levels. And he only has a year left anyway. Couldn't you pull your dd out and try her in state school for reception and year 1 and if she's not happy, send her back to private for year 2 after your dss has finished school?

I actually massively sympathise with your reluctance to make these sacrifices for your stepson's education. I think I would have put my foot down long before this. But having got this far it seems too late to stop now. Would your dh's ex be able to go halves maybe?

And apologies if I've got the wrong end of the stick and dss is actually 12 years old - in which case I would just try to get him to the end of the year.

Skippinginthesnow Tue 19-Jan-21 03:23:13

OP, I feel for you. A few things stand out though......you rent? So you don’t own a house but DC go to private school? I’m sorry, but that is bonkers.
You seem to be making an awful
Lot of sacrifices already for the private school....really, it’s not worth it. And I say that as someone with DC in private school. If we were making the sort of sacrifices you are, DC would be at the local primary. Unless you live in a ghetto, your DC will do fine at the local state school. As for the current situation, it would be extremely traumatic and educationally disruptive to move you DSS in year 11, than move your DC who is in reception and won’t ever remember being at the school. It doesn’t sound like sending your DC1 to private school long term is viable anyway, and DSS only has 4 1/2 terms to go. Have you spoken to his school? It’s likely they could help you financially to get him through to the end.....I don’t think any prep school will be offering assistance if less than 1 year in you say you can’t afford it. I totally get that you want to be fair, but in terms of life events moving a 17 year old out of the school they are doing their A-levels in is going to be way more traumatic than moving a 4 year old out of reception.

SD1978 Tue 19-Jan-21 03:25:18

Whilst I understand your frustration- he is court mandated to provide that education for his son. And pulling a year 12 student and disrupting the final year of education is more harmful than pulling out your joint child.

usernc76482 Tue 19-Jan-21 03:27:05

Thanks for the replies! DH absolutely wants to continue paying, it would break his heart not being able to send him, but we have made so many sacrifices already to keep him in school. I feel like I can't give anymore sad I know I probably sound very selfish.

I guess Re court order, if he can't pay then he can't pay?! The money just isn't really there without us making sacrifices. ExW would probably have to take him to court over it? I don't think anyone wants to go down that road. ExW is a reasonable woman but is not in a position to pay, she must be in a hard place too.

I agree taking him out in his final year will be a blow. But keeping him there will mean us downsizing (again!!) to a cheaper rental and moving our DC away from an area and community I've grown to love.

OP’s posts: |
frazzledasarock Tue 19-Jan-21 03:34:35

Speak to school see if it’s possible for DSS to get a scholarship of bursary for his final year.

I really would try and avoid pulling my child out of their school in their final year of A’Levels.

Could you pull your DD out for now with a view to sending her to private school in year one after DSS has finished?

katy1213 Tue 19-Jan-21 03:35:25

It sounds like the ex-wife should be thinking about finding a job; it's not your responsibility to be worrying about her son's education. What happens when he goes to university?
Your daughter will do fine at a state school. It's mad to pay school fees when you don't even own your own home.

mangoandraspberries Tue 19-Jan-21 03:36:01

Difficult. I too think you should try all you can to keep him there given he is so close to the end. You say you can afford to send one, so why not pay for DSS until he finishes Yr13 but keep DD in state school for the first few years? You can then move her to prep at age 7?

Maxiedog123 Tue 19-Jan-21 03:39:38

If I could afford one set of school fees if send the one in his last year of school as moving would be disruptive and might actually make a difference.
I don't think there is really any extra benefit is sending a prep child to a private school over your local so something you would do only if had money to spare.
Why are you sending children to private schools if you are renting anyway, surely housing should come first?

Suzi888 Tue 19-Jan-21 03:40:50

SherryPalmer

It would be really bad to pull DSS out in y12/13 when he has one year left. Pre-Prep isn’t really necessary - your youngest will be fine staying in state education until y3. It really won’t make a difference.

I agree with this. ^^

‘If the children's are going to suffer it should be all of them’ but they aren’t similar in age. It’s far more disruptive and detrimental to the older child.

redtshirt50 Tue 19-Jan-21 03:52:21

In your first post, you said you could afford to send one of them to school but that doesn't seem to be the case with the second post?

If you can afford to send one I do think you're being incredibly selfish for wanting to pull a 17 year old out of his last year in school. It's only a few more months, it's not years.

Your shared DC won't suffer nearly as much as the 17 year old. Pulling them out isn't comparable, it will be MUCH more harmful for the 7 year old than the younger one.

LaBellina Tue 19-Jan-21 03:55:38

I'm with you on this one OP.
Your DSS has TWO parents. His mum should step up and get a job, a loan, whatever it takes to pay her part of his education. You should not have to cover for this at the expense of your own child's education. That would be very very unreasonable from my point of view.
Normally I would tell you to not make any difference between the two children but in this case I definetly would not accept this.

Theonethatgotawayawayaway Tue 19-Jan-21 03:57:17

I’m sorry but your DC is very young and is only in reception, a public school will benefit him just as much. Your partners older child is in his final year and I think it’s quite unfair to expect his education to be compared to that of a 4 year old, both of them having an education is obviously important, but if the older child is disrupted now it will have a massive impact on whether he attends university or not. Your DS will be fine in a public school.

Tearsfortiers Tue 19-Jan-21 04:03:17

You can't stop paying for your DSS so that your DC can stay at a private school. That would be grossly unfair to DSS to do so in his exam year. Put your child in a state primary so that DSS can do his GCSEs but let ex wife know that you will be unable to pay after this year. Obviously if the court order states that school fees are to be paid until DSS completes A-levels then you are going to have to seek legal advice.

Stuckforlong Tue 19-Jan-21 04:06:21

I'd say keep DSS in school this is an important time for him , your DC is so young and will make friends settle in wherever they go. I agree EX W should also be contributing from what you've said she seems reasonable so as others have said have a discussion
At the beginning you mentioned sacrificing one of them being in private education I think you know the right decision is to keep DSS where he is and discuss with school arrangements if possible
I'd also worry for DSS what effect it could have emotionally to disrupt him at this stage

Pixxie7 Tue 19-Jan-21 04:06:44

It sounds as if you probably should have pulled the rug several years ago, although taking a child out of school at this stage is not ideal he has probably already learnt as much as he needs. Be kind to yourself and do what’s right for the whole family.

Rtmhwales Tue 19-Jan-21 04:11:28

It sounds like even if the OP could afford one set of fees they shouldn't be as they could be better spent subsidizing the family. I'd have a hard time swallowing family money going to benefit DSS instead of saving for a deposit for a family house etc.

HoppingPavlova Tue 19-Jan-21 04:22:55

We could afford to send one or the other but not both children.

Why is this even a question! Of course you would continue a 17yo who is at the very end of their education and who pulling out would probably mean failure at this point (due to trauma of upheaval at that age), as opposed to a reception child who it will only fleetingly affect for a few weeks at most. I would seriously have chosen to eat dogshit rather than move my kids schools at that age. Deadly serious.

I have known some parents where 1 parent has had to move for work and the rest of the family has stayed behind in these situations and then moved with the younger kids when the one in upper senior years finishes, it's that critical.

frazzledasarock Tue 19-Jan-21 04:25:15

Pixxie7

It sounds as if you probably should have pulled the rug several years ago, although taking a child out of school at this stage is not ideal he has probably already learnt as much as he needs. Be kind to yourself and do what’s right for the whole family.

What does that mean?

The OP says they can afford to keep one child in private school. DSS is in his final year of A’Levels, it’s not going to be easy to find him a place at a good college/sixth form to complete his final year at school.

It will be much easier for OP’s DD to be sent to a good primary school for year one then they can send her back to the private school if that’s what they want to do.

Also the father hasn’t actually said he wants to pull his son out of school during the most important academic year for him.

And this is court ordered.

OP, you need to speak to your husband, school and DSS’s mum.
Find a workable solution.

HoppingPavlova Tue 19-Jan-21 04:28:14

It sounds like even if the OP could afford one set of fees they shouldn't be as they could be better spent subsidizing the family. I'd have a hard time swallowing family money going to benefit DSS instead of saving for a deposit for a family house etc.

That would be completely reasonable if they had changed the DSS school a few years ago when it wasn't at a critical point and they had a chance to acclimatise before having A levels thrust upon them, not at this point!

If necessary they should have gone back to court several years ago to get out of the agreement for private schools. I really can't imagine a court would look positively on this at this point (in short the word arseholes would probably cross everyone's mind), but if it had been done previously at a correct point for the child the court probably would have been quite open to it .

Providora Tue 19-Jan-21 04:28:21

So you met, married and had a child with a man who has committed (through the courts) to paying for his son's private education. Now, with only a year to go and at the most critical time, you want to pull the pin, because you don't think it's fair on your own child who probably didn't exist when this commitment was made?

It all sounds so horribly unfair to the poor boy, to be pulled out of the school his siblings are at and have his final year so disrupted because of his father's decision to have another family.

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