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Advice re headteacher (now being dealt with)

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ProfilePosted byOptionsPost Date

Purple **^*Sparkly*^** Diamond

Purple **^*Sparkly*^** Diamond Report 12 Jul 2013 12:13

My son's gf has asked for help in complaining about the treatment of her little lad by the school head teacher. Her son is 5 and is diabetic, from when he was really young. He started at the school last year when he was 4 and a bit, and for the first two weeks Mum had to sit at the school all day in the staff room as they hadn't set up the trained staff to check M's sugar levels and do his insulin injections. They would leave her to go and fetch him from his class instead of an assistant just taking him out quietly so it singled him out among the other children from the start. They did finally get someone trained up so Mum didn't have to stay at the school day in and day out but she still had to be on call all the time, so couldn't think about trying to find work.

The head is never supportive altho there have had to be several meetings between staff, Mum and M's daddy who shares his care. At one time the head asked M. a question and he didn't really understand what she said so didn't answer. He isn't a very confident little boy at school and gets embarrassed if told off. Instead of speaking quietly to him the head called M. into her office and told him off for being rude to her and then told his Mum when she went to pick him up.

My son and his gf are trying to get an exchange from his one bed flat to a two bed one, they want to live together but don't want to give up son's housing assoc. flat, and live in her privately rented flat as they won't feel secure, it's not in a very nice position on a main road over an Optician's shop and she constantly has damp problems etc. If they can get a flat in the same area as son's flat the lad could go to son's old school and they already went there to see what the situation would be if M. could attend. The head teacher was very supportive and they already have trained staff in place for the diabetic stuff so Mum felt much better about their attitude towards M's problems. However they can't send him there unless they can move nearby as it's miles across the city and they don't have transport.

The other day Mum found out that M. was not included in next year's list of pupils. When queried the head teacher said she thought M. was transferring to the other school but there has not been any formal notice given to her to warrant this exclusion.

She requested a meeting and she and my son attended yesterday morning. The head teacher told them that she 'thought' M. was leaving. She has now included M. in the new term lists but said that Mum raised her voice to her at the last meeting and it upset another staff member to hear her so the head teacher had to counsel the staff member!!!! Mum is not the sort of person to shout (unlike me who would have probably been more vocal) but might have sounded exasperated as the attitude all the while has been condescending and patronising and always makes it seem that having M. at the school is a nuisance to them, no thought ever for the child's mental wellbeing.

Mum wants me to help write a letter of complaint but we are not sure who to write to. The Governors are a cliquey bunch who seem to think the headmistress is a wonderful woman but other parents aren't happy with the way she works.

Any ideas on the best way to deal with this? It's going to be tricky while M has to stay at the school but Mum doesn't want him to be constantly picked out or made to feel different.

Will be back on late tonight and would appreciate any suggestions as to the people to write to, would it be the Education Committee?




Sharron Report 12 Jul 2013 12:27

I would get her GP involved for sure. Maybe the Diabetic Association will be able to advise you too, she won't be the first difficult head teacher to have jeopardized a child's wellbeing.

Maybe a word with the housing association would help with different flat too.


eRRolSheep Report 12 Jul 2013 12:31

The Chair of Governors should be your first port of call.
Write to him or her asking for the matter to be placed on the agenda for the next meeting. It will then have to be discussed.
All meetings are minuted by an independent minute taker, ie not a member of staff or a governor. The LEA usually provides minute takers and they can be pretty meticulous.
Ask for a copy of the minutes. If not happy with the outcome then it can be taken further.
Do NOT at this point go straight to the LEA as they will ask why it was not initially dealt with through the governors so it will take the wind out of your sails that you have not followed procedure.
Also, ask the school secretary for a current copy of the complaints procedure.


Dame*Shelly*("\(*o*)/") Report 12 Jul 2013 12:31

i once sent a lttler of complaint about the head teacher to the education department
and the letter was sent strat to my childs shcool for the head to dill with

im woundering if you should all so send a letter to offsted
all children should be treted equaly and fairly and it sands to me in what you are saying this is not the case

any way good luck with your complaint
:-D :-D :-D


+++DetEcTive+++ Report 12 Jul 2013 12:43

There should also be a Parent - Governor. Copy the letter to the Chair to her/him. The school secretary would give you the name and pass the letter on if your son's girlfriend doesn't know her/him from the playground.
She could always ask for a receipt if she has to hand in the letter(s)

EDIT - I'm not up on Council housing rules, but if they all moved into your son's one bed, would that push them up the list because of overcrowding?

Nolls from Harrogate

Nolls from Harrogate Report 12 Jul 2013 13:12

For goodness sake whatever you do take copies and dates ....very easy for people to lose such documents. Also send copies to LEA / Ofsted / Education Dep. / the Headmistress herself and anyone else you can think of ..... Put at the top of letter Copies Sent To: and name them. This should make people think they can't put letter to the bottom of a pile.
Good idea what DET says ....overcrowding??
Good Luck


Cynthia Report 12 Jul 2013 14:12

Personally, and I do have a little knowledge of this sort of thing, I support what Errol suggests.

At this precise moment, there is no need to write a letter to everyone as there is a protocol involved with school policy.


Linda Report 12 Jul 2013 14:30

Liz I once had a problem with a head a bit different to you because she was my boss, but I rang the head of governors had long talk with him about the problem and he sorted it for me.


SueCar Report 12 Jul 2013 17:48

Might be a good idea too for your son & gf to keep a diary of what happens.


UzziInSunshine Report 12 Jul 2013 19:36

LIz give me a short while and I will answer by PM step Mum used to be a head of a special school

Purple **^*Sparkly*^** Diamond

Purple **^*Sparkly*^** Diamond Report 13 Jul 2013 04:15

Thank you all for your helpful responses.

The Parent Governors are the ones N. finds cliquey and very pally with the head, that happened at my son's school a long time ago too, all the Governors except one thought the Head was the best, but he finally got suspended for an incident with a difficult child and then took months off with depression and took early retirement I think. Only the other day I met one of those Parent Governors who said how awful it was the way Dave had been treated, but I never found him supportive and he got quite the wrong end of the stick with things going on with me and my son.

Anyway I phoned N. yesterday afternoon to say I was asking for advice and she was about to call me. She had just heard that M. has got a place at another school which altho a bus ride away is the same side of the city as her flat but could be accessed from my son's flat too and they already have someone trained in the diabetic treatment needed so she is very happy and M is happy too, he already has a little friend at the school.

She is still wondering whether to make a complaint but will think about it for a few days. The Head needs to be made aware that her methods aren't good for young children.

Once again, thanks and will print this out for her. She has been keeping a note of things that happened in the last 11 months. I am sure M will come on in leaps and bounds once he feels more supported at school altho he is doing ok now, his reading is very good and my son helps him with his maths. He helped his previous gf's little boy who is now coming up to 13 with his maths and he is streets ahead of his class mates.


Purple **^*Sparkly*^** Diamond

Purple **^*Sparkly*^** Diamond Report 13 Jul 2013 04:19

Btw I am not up on housing rules now but tenants seem to be left to d.i.y. now, find your own exchange and go from there. I will talk with my son about the overcrowding idea. He has quite a large lounge area and had thought of putting up a dividing wall to make a small room for M. as there are doors into the lounge from both ends of the hallway and it would have a window and a radiator in. The H.A. had said that would be allowed but if he moved out he would have to remove it and make good any damage to the ceiling etc. It would make the lounge much smaller tho and he is used to the space.



CupCakes Report 14 Jul 2013 11:58

Hope you will allow me to contribute because these are issues I deal with everyday.

Housing - your son's Housing association flat is not actually a council flat anymore. Some years ago there were block transfers because councils couldn't afford the upkeep. HAs were one of the options chosen. Depends on where you live.

However for the original transfer there is a security of tenancy. Not so now with HAs being allowed to charge 80% of market rents.

One can go it alone on the housing exchange market or apply directly to the HA for a larger property. They give you points according to a persons change in circumstances.

Your son's gf could put her name down separately for a council house/flat and they would allocate her points picking up special needs points.

Regarding the school matter - unfortunately the complaints procedure are set down as rules - a letter to the chair of school governors first but copy in any local councillor and any councillor on the school governing board.
You can also copy your local MP or you can leave him/her for the next stage.

Your comment that the Chair is chummy with the school head is quite normal so don't be deterred.

If there is no action taken you can then go to the LEA and the council leader.

Look on the council website regarding housing and education & the Housing Association website.

:-D :-D


eRRolSheep Report 14 Jul 2013 13:11

NanaSue/CupCakes - having been a school governor for many years, I have to disagree with you. Why send letters to all and sundry at this stage?

If Liz still wishes to pursue the matter then the correct action at this stage is to write to the Chair asking that the matter either be discussed between the various parties with the chair present or brought up at a meeting. There is no need to involve MPs, councillors etc etc.

I also find your comment about it being quite normal for the Chair of governors to be "chummy with the school head" a bit of a puzzle, somewhat baseless and rather a generalisation.

I don't mean to suggest for one second that this matter is not important to Liz and her family - it certainly is and has obviously caused upset.
But let us not blow it up out of proportion unnecessarily.
NanaSue, you also say "unfortunately the complaints procedure are set down as rules" (sic). Um, why? Do you not agree with rules?

Liz - I really hope your son and everyone else concerned reach a successful outcome.


DazedConfused Report 14 Jul 2013 15:29

Personally I would just try to get him into another school.

Hayley   Empress of Drama

Hayley Empress of Drama Report 14 Jul 2013 17:22

2 sides to every story ...what did you say Errol :-0


GlitterBaby Report 14 Jul 2013 17:28

Not suprised that went


GlitterBaby Report 14 Jul 2013 17:37

But we all know what the problem is with your reply Errol

Mentioning a members old board name

Sure it will go again


eRRolSheep Report 14 Jul 2013 17:39

And your point is?

What is wrong with that for heavens sake?

Rambling Rose

Rambling Rose Report 14 Jul 2013 17:40

I can confirm that was what Errol said...

and of course we know EXACTLY why it was reported and by whom. ;-)