My feed

to access all these features

Here are some suggested organisations that offer expert advice on special needs.

SN children

ASC DS starting recreation

21 replies

countrym0u53 · 28/08/2022 18:10

Anyone else sick with worry about their child starting school next month?
My DS is autistic (and we wonder about ADHD). He's starting mainstream school the week after next and I'm just so worried about it. He has an ehcp with funding for a 1:1 for 32 hrs a week (so including breaks and lunch). However, he is just so unsettled at the moment- lots of meltdowns - struggling hugely with sensory overload - can't seem to cope with other children at all right now - he's always given his peers at preschool a wide birth, preferring to play alone, but he can't even seem to tolerate being near them. He's verbal but struggles to tell me what's wrong. He's lashing out, hitting, biting, throwing when he's having a meltdown- which seems to be happening a lot more at the moment. He doesn't understand that he's going to school, but he must be picking up on the fact that somethings changing.
I'm just so worried. He's having huge meltdowns which I'm finding really difficult to handle, let alone being with someone who doesn't know him.
Has anyone else felt like this and in time their child settled ok?

OP posts:
countrym0u53 · 28/08/2022 18:14

Whoops that should say reception! Blush

OP posts:
openupmyeagereyes · 28/08/2022 18:48

Has he had settling sessions at school? My ds didn’t present quite like your ds, but I remember how worried I was and I really feel for you. For us, reception year was mostly great, though we did have some trickier times. He had lovely 1:1s and an experienced teacher who spent time with him and was very supportive to us all. He watched the Topsy & Tim starting school episode which got him really excited.

Covid has had a huge impact though and ds started a specialist school this year which is also not currently working out great.

I wish you lots of luck and hopefully someone else will come along with some positive experiences soon.

countrym0u53 · 28/08/2022 19:47

Thank you @openupmyeagereyes
We did a few settling in sessions which went OK, but we did them at a different time to the other children - so it was just us and his teacher, plus his main 1:1. We're having another session on our own on one of the inset days too, which I hope will be helpful. We thought doing the settling in sessions alone would be better for him to get used to the new environment before meeting the new children - but tbh I'm now wondering if that was the right choice!
He seems to be struggling a lot at the moment with sensory issues - everything seems to be more intense for him. He couldn't even tolerate the sound of the kettle boiling today, which doesn't usually bother him. Im also finding the things that used to comfort him, like a hug/foot rub, don't help at all and he doesn't want to be touched at all - he's always been very tactile until now. I just wish I knew how to help him, as then I could make home more peaceful and also help school understand how to support him.
Sorry to hear things aren't going as well as you hoped at your sons specialist school, I hope things improve in the new term.

OP posts:
openupmyeagereyes · 28/08/2022 19:57

Does he use ear defenders at all?

countrym0u53 · 28/08/2022 20:06

Sometimes. We always have them out at home, but often he doesn't like the feeling of them being on so wont wear them.
He does like to go and sit somewhere quiet when he's a overwhelmed- but it's like he's going from ok to overload very quickly so it's escalated before we've even realised it. I just wish I understood what was triggering it.

OP posts:
LargeLegoHaul · 28/08/2022 20:21

Arriving 5/10 mins earlier or later in the morning may help, as may going in via a quieter entrance. The same in reverse at the end of the day.

There may be someone at the school over the coming week, you could ask the school for a video/photographs of the classroom/playground/entrance. Then you could spend a couple of minutes twice a day looking at them with DS.

Are SALT and OT included in DS’s EHCP?

LargeLegoHaul · 28/08/2022 20:22

Have you tried a detailed diary to try to spot triggers?

countrym0u53 · 29/08/2022 08:01

Thanks @LargeLegoHaul - I think keeping a diary might be a really good idea - I can't see any rhyme or reason at the mo, but maybe that will help
We have agreed to start and leave school 5 mins early and come and go via the main entrance rather than the playground. We do also have the salt and OT recommendations as part of his ehcp - regular sensory breaks including propreoceptive activities and etc.
One thing I'm really concerned about it actually getting him into school - not so much the first day, but if he doesn't like it (he hates going into preschool). Do you think it would be reasonable to ask if we could park in the disabled space if we have problems? I don't want to take it away from someone else who needs it, but also think it's going to be bloody hard work getting him into the building if we have to park down the road - parking isn't brilliant!
I feel his needs are greater at the moment than when we did he the ehcp/transition planning - I'm really wondering if mainstream is going to be right for him.

OP posts:
openupmyeagereyes · 29/08/2022 08:20

I think parking closer would be a good thing to try, as is coming through the main door and avoiding the crowds. Is he doing full days from the start?

LargeLegoHaul · 29/08/2022 10:41

There will be a trigger, it’s ‘just’ a matter of figuring them out - which isn’t always easy! It might not be something obvious or even related to the same point in time.

Does the EHCP include direct SALT and OT provision?

It isn’t unreasonable for you to ask to park closer/in the car park. Although if you don’t have a blue badge they may not allow you to park in the disabled space, especially if other staff/parents/pupils/visitors do have a blue badge. If you don’t have a blue badge have you applied? Have you also considered asking for transport (or mileage if you really want to transport DS yourself)?

If once DS has settled in school it becomes clear the EHCP isn’t meeting his needs and he needs an alternative placement &/or more provision you can ask for an early review.

Bobobab · 30/08/2022 14:30

I can't reassure you really but we are in exactly the same boat. I felt quite reassured a couple of months ago that his speech was progressing and we have 24 hours funding from his EHCP in place which isn't enough but it's a start... he's been at the preschool so they have worked so hard on the transition.

Anyway he has been all over the place, skills regressions, saying no to everything, not eating his safe foods and he's become very physical not usually aggressively but still...

I am just really hoping it's a wobble before he settles in to a new routine!

Good luck next week xx

Harmoney · 30/08/2022 17:14

I can’t really advise as I’m just starting this journey with my son but he starts school next week and I’m dreading it too.

He had the worst, most distressing meltdowns when going to pre-school which got so bad that we were advised to completely remove him from the setting and keep him at home. He knows he’s going to school but says he doesn’t want to and I know it’s going to be a battle to get anything done on Monday morning and he’ll refuse to get dressed or go in to the school.

You’re not alone though and I understand how you’re feeling with it. I’m dreading what’s to come.

countrym0u53 · 31/08/2022 05:48

Sorry to hear you're both feeling the same @Bobobab @Harmoney - it's quite overwhelming isn't it. I'll keep everything crossed for your little people next week.

We're seeing the Senco on Friday morning - he starts properly on Monday but he's going in for another short settling in session on Friday which is their inset day. I'm going to ask about parking and if we do have issues whether we might be able to use one of the spaces in the school if we have difficulty getting DS into school.

He's doing mornings for 2.5 hours on his first week, then mornings until lunch, then hopefully full time from week 3.

OP posts:
Bobobab · 01/09/2022 20:55

It's straight in full-time for us from Tuesday next week. It's so worrying having to change again but I think he's excited, I just really hope the progress he made at preschool continues!

Good luck next week!

dockspider · 01/09/2022 21:31

Hi OP, my son has just started school (we are in Scotland so term began last week). He's coping so much better than expected and, to be honest, much better than he did at preschool. I have to say that he was settled in the run up, so a very different situation, and it sounds like he presents very differently to your son generally, but still.. I just wanted to give you a shred of hope (sometimes we just need one!)

countrym0u53 · 04/09/2022 16:45

Thank you @dockspider - I'm pleased your son is getting on ok - it's also great to hear your positive experience.

We went into school on Friday and they couldn't have been more helpful about my concerns re getting him into school, lots of ideas and suggestions of how we can work together.

@LargeLegoHaul his ehcp does include salt provision with a therapist, but not OT (other than regular sensory breaks). I didn't even realise that was a possibility, so I will definitely ask about that when we do his review!!

@Bobobab and @Harmoney wishing you and your boys all the best this week. X

OP posts:
dockspider · 05/09/2022 10:39

I’m so pleased you had a good meeting with school OP. Wishing you and all others starting this week the best of luck.

Bobobab · 05/09/2022 13:30

Thank you so much same to you, he's excited to start tomorrow but already arguing about not wearing a shirt!

We tried to get OT in our EHCP but the local authority wouldn't add it. We are on the waiting list but they have given no idea of timeframes. We will push for it in the emergency review that I'm quite sure we will need, the SALT provision from the local authority isn't quantified either so I have no idea how much help we will get so far it has been very ad hoc.

Good luck to all reception newbies xx

LargeLegoHaul · 05/09/2022 13:35

Good to hear the school visit went well. A supportive and proactive school makes all the difference.

@Bobobab If the LA won’t add OT to section F or quantify the SALT provision you can appeal.

Bobobab · 11/09/2022 16:41

Thank you! I was hoping not to go down the appeal route, we were going to see how the first term went for now. We will have more evidence then also of what he needs...

How did week 1 go for everyone? Ours was pretty successful, the home/school communication book is reassuring and DS has been really happy and calm at home which is a good sign. I've barely slept all week with worry, hoping I can relax a tiny bit more now 😭

countrym0u53 · 02/12/2022 19:47

Hello Smile

I just thought I would post a little update in case anyone's interested or for anyone who might come across this thread in the future worrying about their child starting primary school.

DS has settled in so well. The school have been absolutely brilliant, really kind, gentle and patient.

Tbh it wad very bumpy the first month/5weeks, lots of upset each morning going into school, but he's now much more settled and is starting to really like the routine. He spends a lot of time with his 1:1 in the sensory room, but is now choosing to spend more time around his peers which is amazing considering a few months ago he couldn't stand to be around them! He goes in happily most days and is much more settled at home now too.

I hope things are going well for everyone else too x

OP posts:
Please create an account

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.