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Bullying at School.

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by GJC, Sep 5, 2005.

  1. GJC

    GJC
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    My son returned to school today, he's 9 and was subjected to a physical assault (witnessed by other children and a staff member - no provocation by my son to the attacker) by another 9 yr old. The child who assaulted my son has a history of this behaviour in school and at home.

    I want the school to take firm action and I want to hear other stories (case studies) or best practice in how I should go about instigating the expulsion of this child. Should the school or local education authority have a policy on how they deal with bullying? i.e a timetable of procedure/s that they instigate, for example when I call the Head Teacher tomorrow, I want reasurrance that the matter is investigated, and an outcome suitable for the crime is applied to this child.

    Many thanks.

    GJC
     
  2. shodan

    shodan
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    Speaking from a legal point of view, a person under the age of 10 years is deemed as not able to commit an offence so there is no criminal matter as such.

    My advice would be to chat with the Head Teacher and find out what they have done about this and what they plan to do about it first before you make demands and things. I would suggest you push them to make sure that they speak to the childs parents about this and that maybe if the child has a history of this like behaviour then maybe the social services should be informed...
     
  3. Miyazaki

    Miyazaki
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    IMHO the last thing to do is make "demands" of the school. Give them the chance to sort it out themselves within a reasonable timeframe, and then if you feel the matter hasn't been resolved take it further. Just my 2p.
     
  4. Orson

    Orson
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    Sorry to hear about this.

    You don't state how serious the assault was, or what, if any injuries your child received, but unless the offending child has been formerly cautioned/suspended etc. before, it is very very highly unlikely that he/she will be expelled.

    As for your other questions (I speak as a governor of an infant/junior school), then yes, the school will have a bullying policy in place, which should be made available to you.

    The questions you need to ask are;

    Are the school aware of the offenders previous violent conduct? (If it is only playground gossip & hearsay, it won't be officially aware, if so, try and speak to teachers & staff members who have witnessed previous incidents & quote them to the headteacher)

    If so, what has been done (both as punishment and as a preventative action) in the past?

    (The obvious) what are the school going to do about this incident?

    You could indicate in your conversation with the headteacher that you are considering police involvement , depending on the seriousness, and how ‘serious’ you feel your concerns are being taken.

    I really understand where you are coming from with this, but give the headteacher a chance to explain what will happen. Remember, it is highly likely that given a choice, the headteacher would like nothing more than be rid of what may be a nasty bully anyway, so give him/her a chance!
     
  5. Steven

    Steven
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    As someone who goes to college with a bro in high school and bro in primary > the school should indeed have a policy.

    What you want from the school is what exactly happened?
    What action will the school take with the other child? What was the previous course of action? Will he be expelled, suspended and what of the parents?

    Is the school doing anything other than previously done? Its probable another form of action should be taken, as obviously nothing previous has worked

    Why did the child do this? Was your son a specific target or does this kid just pick on another? Has the child got personal reasons and is taking it badly?

    When you say physically assaulted, how far did you mean? You say teachers/satff witnessed - did they intervene quick enough? If not, why not? Also ask about supervision of the children on breaks / lunch
     
  6. GJC

    GJC
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    Shodan/Games Guru

    Shodan:
    Games Guru:
    All advice appreciated.

    Thanks for the advice. The child does have a previous record of this behaviour and the school and social services have dealt with, and are dealing with the child and his parent. I wouldnt word my enquiry as a demand, I'm after policy/procedure, or likewise, as backbone to strengthen my enquiry/s should I need to go that route. I will certainly make a telephone call to the headteacher and then send an email to reafirm (spell?) what was said.
     
  7. GJC

    GJC
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    Orson

    There were/are some red marks on his arms, the situation wasnt allowed to escalate further.

    The child hasnt been cautioned as he is under 10 yrs of age (not for long though).

    I'll try and get the wording for this either emailed to me or posted tomorrow.

    The questions you need to ask are;

    Yes there fully aware of the childs track record. Its been made aware to me by other parents at the school and some residents in the same street that his behaviour has been reported to the school and social services. Social Services have been contacted in the past by other parties.

    If so, what has been done (both as punishment and as a preventative action) in the past?

    (The obvious) what are the school going to do about this incident?

    Noted!

    Agree, and so would many parents.

    Thanks

    ---------------------

    LFC_SL

    Noted. Apologies for the brief replys, I will print all this info off at work tomorrow.


    My son, I believe was a target because the attacker lives opposite my son's house (My daughter, son and ex-wife live at a different address to me with my ex-wife's partner), therefore its easy pickings.

    The childs actions (some of the examples that have been witnesses and filmed on my camera:

    Sticking fingers up at passers by, swearing at other children, throwing mud at windows learning difficulties (he receives extra tuition).

    Red marks (on his upper arms). One member of staff intervened and the attacker was put on detention for the rest of his lunch break.

    Thanks for the advice.
     
  8. Nobber22

    Nobber22
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    That's considered assualt? Geez, things were a bit tougher when I was nine. :rolleyes:
     
  9. Synchronicity

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    Took the words right out of my mouth.Im not condoning what the "attacker" did and I dont know how much things have changed since I was in school but errrr kids misbehave,fight,swear,"Stick fingers up at passers by" and a hell of a lot worse.

    What you describe certainly suggests that the problem child needs attention from the relevant people but I wouldnt say his actions anywhere near warrant an expulsion.Obviously bullying shouldnt be tolerated but I think wrapping kids in cotton wool isnt the best idea either.
     
  10. pjclark1

    pjclark1
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    The school will do as little as they think they can get away with.
    They will also fob you off, until you forget about it. (or at least stop bothering them)

    There is really no way to deal with this, so they don't try.
    (it's only bullying if he picks the same victim/s each time)
     
  11. Steven

    Steven
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    Seems this kid needs someone to talk to, to find out whats really going on
     
  12. Mr.D

    Mr.D
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    Tell the bully you've shagged his mum and if he doesn't behave himself you'll do her again.
     
  13. vonhosen

    vonhosen
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    Maybe, but they have a duty of care towards all concerned & they must have a policy in place to deal with such incidents.

    True if you don't push they may try & get away with as little as possible (they are no different from a lot of other public service organisations in that respect), but they are ultimately accountable & can be sued/taken to task where they fall short of their obligations.
     
  14. overkill

    overkill
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    They must indeed. You can also ask to see it. When talking to the headteacher indicate what has happened, and, if it happens again go right back in there until something is done. Otherwise, as PJclark says, the school will just do nothing until they have too.

    Exactly. One of the reasons bullying has become so high profile, is that, like so many things litigation has entered the school arena. Another import from across the pond.
     
  15. Steve.EX

    Steve.EX
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    Slightly off-topic but still relevent to the wierdness of school/legal policies:
    I am only now reaching some form of conclusion to an absolutely horrendous break-up from my long term partner of 13 years, in which i have lost my house, reasonable access to my beloved 8 year old son, been cheated and ignored by the "legal/court" system i have paid lots of money to to try and help me with these and several other issues etc etc.....anyway. Some time earlier this year, on a whim i booked a short holiday for my son and i which, i had planned, would give me 2 or 3 months to bribe my ex into letting me see my son (for a whole 4 days) before we would go away (i have found she can be almost reasonable if it involves giving the shirt off my back and doesn't affect her weekly "financial support" from me in any way). With this agreed i approached the school to request term-time absence via the usual forms. It was with some surprise that this was denied and after a meeting with the (very supportive) Headmaster it came to light that my son had by anyones standards an abysmal school attendance record. This was very distressing as he is naturally academic. After several grovelling letters to his mother asking the reasons for his absenteeism and receiving no acknowledgement whatsoever i felt i had no other choice but to request the services of the School Welfare Officer to try and get to the bottom of this. Shortly after this meeting i received a letter from both my ex's Solicitor and the school explaining that i was no longer allowed to contact the school regarding any subject other than his open evening/Christmas play etc!!!! When at many of our Court Hearings i asked as to the sanity of this it has transpired that my "interference" is infact an invasion into HER PRIVACY!!! When asking the Judge how can this be and who will, if not i, take issue with this non-attendance i was in no uncertain terms told to shut-up, it has nothing to do with me and if i attempt to contact the school again he (the Judge) would be happy to sit at any hearing my ex should instigate in taking action against me regarding this issue!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    SHEER F*****G MADNESS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Needless to say i have (with the aid of a frighteningly expensive solicitor) gained Parental Responsibilty which "allows" me to contact schools/doctors etc without risking recrimination. This, of course, had to come at the expense of some of my ex's "good character" status in court, which no doubt will have further implications for both my son and i.
    Things like the washing up and decorating etc no longer bother me in the same way they did after my all this.
     
  16. Adrenochrome

    Adrenochrome
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    What a horrible predicament to be in :(

    I wish you well :)
     
  17. Mep

    Mep
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    does she stop to think about how her vindictiveness to you might affect your son!!....sounds like you are way better off without her mate
     
  18. Steve.EX

    Steve.EX
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    I have to say that the general sense of helplessness has been overwhelming at times. I have sought the service of local MP's, Newspapers, in fact anyone who would listen as to the utter futility of the Family Courts Service, whilst no end of good will is on offer, what is the point of a system that has no power (or indeed willingness) to enforce any Orders that THEY produce?
    I have spent an awful and i do mean awful lot of money and got absolutely nowhere, in fact i would say after thousands of pounds of outlay i am probably worse off than i was before i decided to take the legal route.
    I have lost my house on the basis of a lie and a lie alone.
    I have lost any meaningful contact with my son, unless you call every other weekend meaningful, even though i live no more than 10 miles from him. I had and still try to maintain a relationship with my son that i am very proud of and put 100% into - no excuses or compromises. This apparently is worth nothing as is my word against my ex's. I have had the Police turn up at my Parents, whom are both retired and come from a era where this sort of thing just isn't appreciated, and despite a Police report stating that my ex "was extremely fortunate not to be prosecuted for wasting everybodies time and lying to serve her own purposes" i have been treated as a criminal by the Court Judge completely disregarding the fact that it is actually i who has called and paid for the hearing in order to try and offer my son some semblance of normality.
    I lost my house as we had agreed to move to our respective parents for a short time until the house was sold on which the DAY AFTER i moved out a new fella moved in. Her solicitor seems to actively encourage this behaviour in advising her on the many workarounds that exist to negate the fact that she is living in a house that i pay for with someone else who pays nothing.

    I have stood up in court and looked around at everybody and asked simply - "Am i really the only one here who thinks that this situation is one of utter madness and the cruelty to both my son and i" to be told to leave the court room.

    I tell you now fella's never ever get into this situation, i am reliably informed that it can actually be worse if you are married, at least i do not have to maintain her, although she did try by threatening to give up her part time job - bless her heart. If you do find yourself in a similar situation think very carefully before approaching the Family Court system (although i understand as with me sometimes it is the only course left) as they are for all their paperwork powerless.
    It is my experience that (in my case) a non-resident parent has less rights than a stranger on the street!
    Be warned that this really can happen to you and years of your life can dissapear into it.

    regards

    Steven
     
  19. GJC

    GJC
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    I feel for you Steve.EX - I've been in a similar situation myself, luckily my ex is amicable and I havent had to go down the Court route.
     
  20. Steve.EX

    Steve.EX
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    Yup. Like nothing else it surely has opened my eyes to what a nasty b******d world we live in.
     
  21. alexs2

    alexs2
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    My best wishes to you Steve.EX,and I hope things improve.

    Back to bullying....my daughter has had a bit of this at school(2ndary school),and I've found the best approach is to request a meeting with the teacher(s) involved,and failing that,the headmaster,and to make your views politely,but clearly heard,and agree with them what you expect to be done,and that you expect to be contacted with the details of that,within a short time period.

    Do not give in,but always be firm and polite,and don't lose your rag no matter how tempting it may be.
     
  22. GJC

    GJC
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    My Ex has a meeting scheduled this afternoon at the school :lesson: .
     
  23. Steve.EX

    Steve.EX
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    Yes, my experiences of dealing with the school is to request a meeting with the Head or Dept only, and if necessary follow that up with a written request and always ask for a written statement of intent etc. It is ALWAYS better to have something on a piece of paper.
     
  24. BrianC

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    Sorry to here that Steve, it seems all too common at the moment. :(

    I strongly recomend any non married fathers to get Parental Responsibility even if they think that they will never break up with the childs mother ASAP as you have no rights without it. Its far easier and cheaper to do this with the mothers consent rather than waiting till you are only speaking to each other through solicitors.

    As for the bullying, did anybody see the Panorama program on bullying? While it highlighted extreme cases including a surreptitiously taped conversation between a victim of bullying and a teacher were the teacher blamed the student for getting bullied. :eek:

    It did show how both schools and parents have their hands tied by the system - schools can't exclude problem children as often no where else will have them, and there is only so much a parent can do.
     
  25. Miyazaki

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    I just started my teacher training today, and did hear about "that" panorama programme. If it is any comfort to any of you, I would whistle blow in a heartbeat if anything like that happened at a school I worked at. IMHO there is nothing worse for a child than to experience bullying, it affects the rest of their life, and in some cases, contributes to them taking their own life :(

    I really hope I can make a difference, and it is the main reason why I have decided to enter the teaching profession. :thumbsup: Edit: I forgot the 14 weeks holiday per year. And 5 hour days. :eek: :rotfl: :rolleyes: ;)

    Steve.Ex, I feel really sorry for you about your situation, I can't imagine what you are going through with this. Have you joined fathers 4 justice? They might be able to help you out?
     
  26. Steve.EX

    Steve.EX
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    For all that may be (unfortunately) interested Fathers for Justice are not overly interested in individual cases they are more about changing the legal aspects of a Father's rights, although i did speak (via correspondence) at length and actually developed the impression that there were some highly intelligent and dedicated members, rather than the sensationalist stuff you tend to see on TV. Families Need Fathers i found to be a far better source of current and correct legal understanding and support and i would recommend them, if for no other reason than in giving a clear sense of direction. It is important to understand and fight the fight's you can win. Solicitors are only too willing to take on any and all "fights" regardless of predictable outcomes, and at some expense.
     
  27. Steve N

    Steve N
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    I've just finished reading this post and it's both heartbreaking and enraging.
    I don't know how I would cope with what you're having to cope with. Its like a world gone mad.
    I don't not what to say, words fail me.
    I can only wish you good luck and the strength to cope as best you can.
     
  28. Nebby

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    Hope your meeting with the school goes well GJC.

    Your school should have an anti-bullying policy in place, so don't accept any half-arsed excuses. They are responsible for your child's safety and wellfare, not just his education.

    If all else fails, you could try the "Hollywood Solution": try and arrange for the bully to pop by your house one evening, while your son is busy outside painting fences and waxing cars [note: requires the assistance of kindly handyman / martial arts master to be truly effective].

    Once word gets out that your son can catch a fly with a pair of chopsticks and do the crane technique, he'll have no more problems. :smashin:
     
  29. Mr.D

    Mr.D
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    I still think you should bang the mother and then brag about it to the kid. That'll knock the wind from his sails!
     
  30. overkill

    overkill
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    Please don't mention them when someone is making a geniune attempt to sort out a terrible situation. FFJ is full of absent parents (some of whom I have dealt with)trying to get out of maintenance by getting shared care for their children. Yes, they are that cynical.

    Agreed. They seem much easier to deal with and have the childrens and fathers interests at heart.

    The trouble is, the statistics show, that 70% of fathers who left the family home before the CSA arrived, did so willingly, and a further 80% made no attempt to contact, whatever the relationship with the mother, their children after 5 years. The average maintenance payment prior to the CSA's arrival was..................? Have a guess. You WILL be shocked.

    This has led to the current, and unacceptable swing, away from fathers, both in legal terms and in the courts misguided perceptions. Groups like FFJ are NOT helping.

    What we need is a proper overhaul of the system, and a change in the perception of fathers in the modern World to stop people like Steve.ex getting shafted.

    Exactly.
     

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