The thing is, there so much going on now I do not know where to begin. But I will start with the thing that takes up the most part of my boggled brain right now, which is the perplexing case of the school that refuses bend.
And when I say ‘bend’ I mean show any flexibility towards my reasonable requests.
My daughter, my wonderful, unicorn, rainbow daughter is currently awaiting an ASD (autism spectrum disorder) assessment. The school are playing a part in this, with much of a push and shove from yours truly. I felt as though I was already fighting before the application for assessment was put in. There have been hiccups from the start which has left me unimpressed at every level so far. This journey started around Christmas last year.
It draws closer to the actual assesment, but in the meantime my little unicorn is not getting the support she needs to thrive. But what should I be expecting of the school in terms of support? I am sure I have exhausted her class teacher already, because in our parents evening the woman was shaking with nerves (or may be anger) when speaking with me; well, I say speaking, but what I really mean is following the transcript so politically pre rehearsed with me.
I am relentless, but my simple want is for my emailed questions to be answered with answers via email so that I can have a paper trail for my future reference. I have requested this on several occasions, but I have been met with at least three face-to-face meetings and no follow-up email from any of them! Surely it would be easier to respond via email rather than rehearse a script to rattle off? Surely notes have been made to give said speech?
My initial request has been denied anyway. All I wanted was a variation in reading book for the unicorn girl who finds it hard to concentrate on the same thing over and over, the unicorn who memorises her books from start to finish before she brings them home meaning that her eyes do not even have to look at the words, she is supposed to be familiarising herself with. So, the poor kid must sit in a ‘one size fits all’ reading group when clearly the one size does not fit all.
Rightly or wrongly, I have taken the matter into my own hands and bought additional reading materials since her school clearly wants no part in her progression. Their current answer to my issues is to give my FIVE-YEAR-OLD homework EVERY DAY OF THE WEEK alongside her reading book. Insert palm face emoji here. Which I will not be encouraging her to do!! Work life balance is important, school already have her for six plus hours a day and I am sending her there to learn this stuff. Yet here we are, as parents filling in the gaps that teachers do not have the time or capacity to do. The curriculum clearly needs a revamp.
How tempting it is to home school with this going on?
Then there’s SENCo. The ‘sometimes makes an appearance on the school gate at drop off/pick up person’, happy, again to chat face to face but seems averse to email correspondence. This place would not work well as a business. Their communication is diabolical. But they are open for informal chats – any time which include blank stares and nervous, but polite smiles.
So that is me currently locked in an ongoing battle with school for any kind of clarity, support, information, and communication for the foreseeable. They will not like me for it, but for my little unicorn girl I will push, fight and advocate on her behalf. Always.
Could I be the one who will find the limits of the school in terms of what to expect?
We all know those who do not bend eventually break, but let us hope for the sake of everyone the school can get their backsides in gear and do the right thing.
Have you ever had to push back with your kids’ school? I’d love to hear your story too.
Wish me luck with it.
Love & Best,