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6 year old walking to school alone via a woodland track
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Loveagingernut · 06/12/2021 22:17

I am looking for others views, maybe I’m being too protective and should be promoting independence.

Back story….
School walk via roads and pavements is over a mile long, however there is a short cut through woodland area where the track is just less than half a mile but it is classed as a forest. On the left of the forest is an industrial estate with approx 60 different businesses. Due to the nature of 80% of these businesses, they mainly employ men. On the right of the forest there is a residential area and the primary school.
The track is popular with dog walkers, teenagers going in the opposite direction to the secondary school use this short cut, and lots of men that walk or cycle to their employment in the industrial estate.

So this is my concern…..
A young mum, that I support, was walking her 6 year old daughter to school via the track, but I have found out that in the cold, winter, dark mornings, the child is now walking to school alone on this route. She doesn’t need to cross any roads so no safety issues there but am I being over protective thinking it’s not acceptable for a 6 year old taking this route on her own.

Mum isn’t taking her, because she has to be elsewhere for 9am and doesn’t have the time to take her daughter to school, thus allowing daughter to walk through the forest alone.

Am I being too protective or do I promote independence.

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traka · 06/12/2021 22:44

Very worrying that you have had to ask

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WorraLiberty · 06/12/2021 22:45

@Loveagingernut

For clarity, I do not agree with mum allowing child to walk alone.

I am a grandmother figure to the 6 year old although not related by blood. She has no birth grand mothers.

The mum lacks in parenting skills and i stepped in about 3 years ago to give her guidance, so she takes on board, some she completely ignores.

You stepped in to give her guidance and yet you have to ask Mumsnet if it's ok or if you should be 'promoting independence'??

Jesus wept
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AbsolutelyFuckinFabulousDarlin · 06/12/2021 22:45

But either way it's worrying that they have to ask @Flymetotheloon, if it's the norm they wouldn't have to unless they had other concerns
Their defence, if anything happened couldn't be 'I asked a group of anonymous people on the Internet and they thought it was ok'
Seek further advice OP

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whatinthenameofhen · 06/12/2021 22:45

It is neglectful. A trusted person needs to see that this young child gets to and from school safely. Unbelievable.

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Loveagingernut · 06/12/2021 22:45

Sorry, I don’t mean it to be odd,
Mums thought of child walking alone is promoting independence, I am unhappy with this but am being seen as being to protective of the 6 year old.

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ThisIsStartingToBoreMe · 06/12/2021 22:47

I wouldn't report her, just tell her to stop doing it because its unsafe. Then if she still does it I would report her, but no need to report her without having a talk to her first.

Her college will be understanding about coming in a bit later due to childcare issues. Or she can share the school run with a friend - and if she doesn't have a friend then she needs to make one, so that she's got a friend to call on if she needs it.

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flymetotheloon · 06/12/2021 22:48

@Loveagingernut

For clarity, I do not agree with mum allowing child to walk alone.

I am a grandmother figure to the 6 year old although not related by blood. She has no birth grand mothers.

The mum lacks in parenting skills and i stepped in about 3 years ago to give her guidance, so she takes on board, some she completely ignores.

Ok.

I think your radar is off if you are considering whether you should "promote independence"

Report your concerns to official channels (yes, I'm fully aware those channels failed Arthur) but that's all you can do.

If you "promote independence" a) it's not your role you aren't the child's parent and b) you are an enabler.

I think you need to look at yourself and your role in what's going on here.
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CoastalWave · 06/12/2021 22:48

I think you need to walk with the child. You know about it. Stop letting it happen.

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WorraLiberty · 06/12/2021 22:51

@CoastalWave

I think you need to walk with the child. You know about it. Stop letting it happen.

No, a parent needs to walk with the child or arrange wraparound care.
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backTofrontagain · 06/12/2021 22:51

So this is some kind of unofficial supper you’re offering?

You clearly mean well but lack the skills to properly support if you have to ask on here for opinions you’d be better off directing this mum to proper professional support

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WorraLiberty · 06/12/2021 22:52

By 'a' parent, I mean one of the child's parents.

I don't think it should be down to the OP unless she wants to do it. Although the fact she had to ask is still concerning.

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backTofrontagain · 06/12/2021 22:52

@backTofrontagain

So this is some kind of unofficial supper you’re offering?

You clearly mean well but lack the skills to properly support if you have to ask on here for opinions you’d be better off directing this mum to proper professional support

Support !!! Not supper
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milkysmum · 06/12/2021 22:54

Surely the school has noticed that a 6 year old is arriving at school alone? If they haven't I would just make a quick call to the school office in the morning, they will soon address it with the mum.
At our school I sign a form that my son can walk to and from school alone but this can only be done in year 5 and 6.

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Switch82 · 06/12/2021 22:55

This gets worse minute by minute - there could be a number of safeguarding issues if you can’t see this one is! What else does this mum let this 6 year old do? Is the child ever left alone?

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flymetotheloon · 06/12/2021 22:57

@milkysmum

Surely the school has noticed that a 6 year old is arriving at school alone? If they haven't I would just make a quick call to the school office in the morning, they will soon address it with the mum.
At our school I sign a form that my son can walk to and from school alone but this can only be done in year 5 and 6.

This is why I asked OP if they were in the UK. Seems like a bit of a porky to me that a 6 year old is doing this route alone and nobody has noticed.

5 years ago when my youngest was in yr 1a 6yo was being sent from the top of the road 500m to the school alone, no road crossing and was reported to school several times by concerned parents.
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Phoenix76 · 06/12/2021 22:58

My 8 year old wouldn’t be doing this (and not even for a good few years yet either). When you’re a parent, you don’t get to put your needs first, a parent must put the welfare (and all that entails) of their children first (should be second nature, an unconscious action) although sadly the headlines remind us this isn’t always the case.

Friend or not, I would be talking to the school as a starting point. I too, am assuming uk as I know sweet fuck all about acceptability in other countries.

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StellaGibson118 · 06/12/2021 22:59

How has the school not noticed this and reported to the local safeguarding? How could any school not notice a child walking into school without sight of a carer at that age? Fair enough if in Y5 or 6 but not this young.

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Loveagingernut · 06/12/2021 22:59

The reason I asked on here is because mum is very manipulative, lies to me all the time, she tells me what she thinks I want to hear.

I asked because I needed to hear from others that agreed with me, that it’s not acceptable for a 6 year old to walk alone to school .

Tomorrow I will have discussions with mum, I might even show her this thread as back up .

Thank you everyone

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TinselTitsAndGlitteryBits · 06/12/2021 22:59

My DD is 6.

I can see her school from my lounge window and I wouldn't even consider her walking alone until she's at least 10.
Even with a migraine, I have crawled there to drop her off.

So dangerous. There's so many sickos in this world, god knows what's lurking in that place. Nope.

I don't know what you mean by support(?) but you need to report the mum to the safeguarding officer at the school. I'd maybe even call the police to be honest, it's neglect and endangerment of the child.
I find the excuse about needing to be elsewhere disgraceful.

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Comedycook · 06/12/2021 23:00

God that's scary...My dd is 11 and I wouldn't allow that, let alone for a six year old

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TonytheDog · 06/12/2021 23:00

Could you take her yourself?

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Loveagingernut · 06/12/2021 23:01

I am in Scotland, I am telling the truth, no porkies

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Thedogscollar · 06/12/2021 23:01

@Loveagingernut

Thank you all so much for agreeing with me on this.
I just needed to know that others thought the same as me.

I promise it is not fake. Tomorrow I will do something constructive about it.

Please please do.
A shiver went down my spine reading that.
Far far too young for this.
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Yaya26 · 06/12/2021 23:01

That’s awful and dangerous in so many ways. Poor little girl. If iI knew someone doing this it would keep me awake at night. Please do something about it immediately. Also makes me wonder what other sort of risks/decisions the Mum would take.

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WorraLiberty · 06/12/2021 23:01

I asked because I needed to hear from others that agreed with me, that it’s not acceptable for a 6 year old to walk alone to school.

I'm genuinely speechless but ok...

Is there any professional support for this mum, because I really think she needs it.

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