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There are no guarantees this won't happen again...

This morning, the Grumpy Old Man had a meeting with the assistant principal of our current primary school, and Ari's teachers. We had initially requested a meeting two and half weeks ago to ask, again, if Ari could be moved to a different classroom as we have not been happy with his social interactions in his current room. The principal and assistant principal basically took their jolly old time responding to our request.

The policy at the school is that parent requests for children to be moved will not be supported - and apparently there is no reason they accept as valid, which to me is a sure sign of inflexibility and not being particularly interested in the best interests of their students. I should say here, I sympathise that there are parents who badger schools about letting their little diddums be in class with their best friend, but this was not that kind of situation at all, in fact, we were attempting to separate Ari from his besties.

Anyway, as it took the principal and assistant principal so very long to respond to our request, despite multiple reminders from Ari's class teachers, we eventually decided we really just needed a more responsive situation for Ari. So, we started looking at other schools.

So, when the Grumpy Old Man went to the meeting this morning, it seemed like a moot point. Still, they wanted to know why we were moving the kids. The Grumpy Old Man related that we were not happy with the social situation in Ari's class a year ago when we asked for him to moved, but had accepted that our request was denied, and given the teachers a chance to 'implement strategies' to try and deal with the situation. In the mean time, Ari's wrist had been fractured in a school yard altercation and we had had reports that he was as distracted in class as ever, if not worse.

So, with the behaviours having become further entrenched, we felt the best recourse was to move Ari to an altogether new environment.

The assistant principal's response to this was, 'Well, there is no guarantee this won't happen again at the new school!'

Of course, she is absolutely right, I cannot deny her argument.

But here's another take on that same point...

We can guarantee that if we don't move him, things will not change.

We can guarantee this because we gave the school a year to effect change, and they were unable to do so.

We can guarantee that if no change happens in this situation, it will be to Ari's detriment and we can guarantee this because he has already suffered physically and socially as a result of no effective change in the past year.

The future is never certain, but if you continue to stand in the river, you will continue to be wet.



Sarah said…
I Agree Sif - I think you are absolutely making the right decision for Ari!

I had a similar problem with Miss Mac where the bulling resulted in her being attacked and she had a severe outbreak of hives due to stress that required steroids to bring them under control.

While her class teacher was sympathetic the school policy meant that they wouldn't move her to a different class.

I ended up taking time off work and collecting her at lunchtimes to bring her home to eat. Playtimes she spent in the classroom as though she were the one at fault.

When the situation failed to improve I moved her even though she was just starting year 6.

It was the best decision I ever made!

The situation WASN'T the same at the new school. She made friends. Felt settled and was the happy girl she used to be again.

She is now in her final weeks of school and taking her exams. She has a great circle of friends, plenty of confidence and is expected to get good grades.

You gave them the chance to put this right and they failed you and your son.

You are now giving him another chance and it could well be the one he needs to turn everything around.

Best of luck :-)
Sif Dal said…
Ah! So glad it worked out so well for your daughter - that's the kind of ending I'm hoping for!
Anne M said…
We've been the same with our children Sif. Both have been moved, twice each, but are now in the same school, together. It seems there are the same difficulties and issues at this school but at lease at this school, their educational needs are being met. I just don't get what's happened with a lot of kids these days. I was in my daughter's year 5 class this week and the children were just wild. The poor teacher has her hands full that's for sure. It's a shame other parents don't seem to care how their children behave at school. Some children have been expelled from other schools 3 times already for poor behaviour. It's a crying shame.

Anne xx

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