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To ask whether to contact the school about the behaviour points given to my son

65 replies

eleflump · 01/05/2013 17:22

This is my first AIBU - please bear with me!!

DS1 is in Year 7 at our local secondary school. He is a mature lad, in the top sets and not prone to being in any trouble at school unlike DS2.

He was walking down the corridor at lesson changeover when another boy in Year 7 came up to him out of nowhere and punched him in the head. My son knows this boy's name but has never spoken to him before.

The incident was last week and DS told me about it at the time - he had a red mark on the side of his head where he had been punched. My son was caught by surprise when he was hit, and turned round and punched the boy back. A teacher saw the incident, came up and asked the boy if he was "scrapping again" and took him to his lesson.

Nothing more was said until the weekly round up of reward/bad behaviour points during form time today, when DS discovered that he has been given three bad behaviour points. He has got to this point in the year without having accrued any, and is fuming that he has now been given these because of being punched by this boy. He wants me to contact school.

I am pretty sure that the school are going to say that he should not have punched back and that the points will have to stand, and to be honest, I am more concerned that DS stands up for himself in such a situation than the fact that he has been given behaviour points.

However, he has really bought into the reward/behaviour point scheme at school, and I think it is sad that his record is now going to be blemished because of this incident. I feel that it will destroy DS's faith in the integrity of the scheme.

So - would you contact the school to try and get the point removed? Or just explain to DS that although we wouldn't condone him receiving behaviour points in any other situation, in this instance we believe that he was entitled to defend himself against an unprovoked attack?

OP posts:

RedHelenB · 01/05/2013 17:25

He should have followed the school rules just as the other lad should have done.


AnyFucker · 01/05/2013 17:28

I think you should keep your beak out and let school deal with this in the way they see fit

Sometimes life isn't fair, and this is something your ds also needs to absorb along with all the book-learnin'

A behaviour point (or two) is not going to go against him in later life. Relax


FreyaSnow · 01/05/2013 17:28

Almost exactly the same thing happened to DS in year seven. The only difference was that DS was sitting on the floor and was kicked in the head, stood up and punched back. I did phone the school and made it clear that DS was defending himself. They didn't take back the behaviour comment.

I think if your child is generally well behaved and the other child isn't, that is obvious to the school anyway. It is unfair that children should receive behaviour points for self defence, but it is a hard decision for teachers to judge. It is more important that your child defends himself.


LaurieFairyCake · 01/05/2013 17:29

He got them for punching the other boy not because he was punched.

Tell your kid not to punch, instead to tell a teacher - and then only the other boy would have got the points.

there are plenty of ways to stand up for yourself without hitting someone else.


Floralnomad · 01/05/2013 17:29

He shouldn't have punched him back ,and if the only consequence of doing so is these points I think he should count himself lucky .


insancerre · 01/05/2013 17:29

he lost the points for hitting someone.
You should be telling him that hitting anyone is wrong, even if they hit him first.


PrincessScrumpy · 01/05/2013 17:29

Sorry he punched back... In my school both would be in isolation for that.


Lwilliams101 · 01/05/2013 17:29

One of my friends dd was given a bad report from a teacher because of another child messing around near her and she talked to the the school about and her dd went up to her teacher and explained the situation the teacher apologised for it and changed the mark I think you should ring the school and get your ds to talk to the teacher and explain the situation but also get him to say how it upset him
hope I helped


twofingerstoGideon · 01/05/2013 17:29

I think he has to take the points. Even though his punch was retaliatory, he still hit another pupil. I know this is sometimes an instinctive response, but he should have reported the other boy's behaviour and let the school deal with it accordingly.


AnythingNotEverything · 01/05/2013 17:30

He punched the boy back. Maybe he was in the wrong place at the wrong time, but life isn't fair.

I wouldn't get involved.


greenformica · 01/05/2013 17:30

He punched someone. He shouldn't have. It's right the points are removed as he isn't innocent.

Your son being on the receiving end of a punch should have walked off and told a member of staff he had been hit. Violence should not be met with violence, your son gave the bully just what he wanted.


mynewpassion · 01/05/2013 17:30

I am pretty sure that the school are going to say that he should not have punched back and that the points will have to stand, and to be honest, I am more concerned that DS stands up for himself in such a situation than the fact that he has been given behaviour points.

Explain this to him. Fine to defend himself but also accept that fighting is not tolerated in the school and he will be punish even if he didn't start the fight.


HollyBerryBush · 01/05/2013 17:31

Oh well, it's swings and roundabouts.

DS3 has just got a strike for trying to break up two girls fighting - I did tell him to let them get on with it and no good comes of intervention. Which I think is wrong, you wouldnt walk by in the street as an adult would you?

I also know if another adult hit you, you'd lamp them one back, so fair play to him for sticking up for himself - although that won't please the school if tell them that.


FreyaSnow · 01/05/2013 17:34

If you are stood level with somebody, looking them in the face, it is reasonable to suggest that once they have punched you in the head you can appraise whether or not this is one punch or an ongoing attack. You cannot do that if somebody behind you punches you in the head. You have to make an instant judgement to defend yourself or potentially end up in hospital.

If as an adult and somebody behind me punched me in the head, I wouldn't think, 'oh, I'll just keep walking and find the police. I'm sure they will stop.' You can't know that they will stop.


lborolass · 01/05/2013 17:34

I'm not sure whether I would contact the school but I think that if the circumstances are exactly as you've described your son has a right to be cross.

I'm not sure how realistic it is to expect a child who's been taken by surprise and been punched to have the presence of mind not to react and tell a teacher. Wouldn't most people's instant reaction to be to hit back in self defence (John Prescott springs to mind).

Obviously I'm not condoning violence but I don't think this is quite as black and white as PPs have said.


eleflump · 01/05/2013 17:41

Thanks all - the other boy punched him from behind, and so he just swung round in self-defence before he had time to think what he was doing.

However, as many of you have pointed out, the school rule is that you should tell a teacher and not hit back, and so I think he has just been unlucky in this instance by being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

We will explain this to him and say that the points will have to stand on this occasion, and that life is not always fair!

Many thanks for this different viewpoints.

OP posts:

kilmuir · 01/05/2013 17:41

well done to your son, doubt the nuisance boy will bother him again.
Doubt the school will back down.


CaramelisedOnion · 01/05/2013 17:48

Its all very well saying "he should have walked away and told a teacher, but of course that could have ended up in him getting a real walloping from the lad in question later, who might even have rallied a few mates. One punch? Punch once back. Clear statement of standing his ground, on his own. Unpopular view, perhaps but there it is. In OPs situation I would left son know the truth....that in that situation I would have punched back also...but that he might not be able to shift the points because life isn't always fair.


NatashaBee · 01/05/2013 17:52

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Madamecastafiore · 01/05/2013 17:54

Your kid didn't get the points for being punched, he got them for punching someone.

You can never use retaliation as an excuse.


Picturesinthefirelight · 01/05/2013 17:56

I'm guessing none of you saying he shouldn't have punched back have never been attacked and had a reflex action to instinctively hit back

I've fine it with ds. Luckily I didn't actually catch him but he came up to he unexpectedly as I was dozing and playfully waved his arm at my face. You can't stopbghecregkext action of striking out sometimes.


insancerre · 01/05/2013 17:56

I don't get this self defence thing.
Why is it wrong for this lad to have hit the op's son but pefectly acceptable for the op's son to hit the lad?
I really don't get it at all.
Where odes it end? If the other lad hits him again is it alright for him to swing another punch?
When do they stop? When one is unconcious?
Self defence is only a justifiable course of action when your life is in danger.


pickledginger · 01/05/2013 17:57

Punching = bad behaviour points. He punched back, so he takes the points. Even the doing the right thing sometimes has consequences.


pickledginger · 01/05/2013 17:58

'Self defence is only a justifiable course of action when your life is in danger'

That's like painting a target onto a child.


IloveJudgeJudy · 01/05/2013 18:02

Those of you saying don't punch back have obviously not been to school recently. It's the only way to stay safe and not be bothered again. OK, the points will have to stand, but in reality the only way to deal with this sort of thing is to punch back.

that's the way it is in school. OP's DS is only in Y7 and has a lot of years to go at school. He might as well make it known that he won't put up with any nonsense.

Absolutely do not condone throwing the first punch, but having told DS1 to turn the other cheek many times, the only way the aggravation stopped was when he punched the main person back. He's had no trouble at all since.

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