General Etiquette > Family and Children

What are my options? Update #8; #23; #54; Shocking Update #79, extra #94

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Nemesis:
My toddler is attending kindergarten. This is a class of four year olds.

One of her classmates is clearly different from the rest. He hits other children, pushes people, destroys artwork made by the kids etc. The class teacher has to keep him by her side at all times, making it hard for her to teach the other kids. The moment she turns her head to teach someone else, he is off again - normally jumping on tables, hitting someone or behaving in a disruptive (and destructive) manner.

The teachers have spoken to the principal about this child's behaviour and the principal's response is, "Just watch him more carefully".

Today, I went to pick my daughter up and she was visibly upset. I asked her what was wrong, and she told me that this classmate had slapped her repeatedly, hit her head, kicked her legs and punched her body several times. She told me that she cried and that she had gone to her teacher. The boy was punished by having to stand in the timeout corner. I spoke to the teacher, and she said that she is trying her best. The same classmate had hit all the other kids in the class some time or other.

I feel that the time has come for me to do something. My spouse thinks that I should try to rally other parents to speak to the principal, but we never see the other parents. They just drop their kids off and go to work. I don't want to be unfair to the boy, but I don't believe it is reasonable for my kid to be pulled out of the school that she loves (she chose this kindergarten out of three others).

I plan to write a letter to the principal. I'm not sure exactly how to word it without sounding like a disgruntled parent. It is not as though the principal is unaware of this situation - the teacher told me that she has reported numerous incidents to the principal since school started in mid-June. There is at least one report of beating everyday for the past month and a half. I personally think that this boy should be removed from the school as they clearly do not have the resources to deal with him. But is this my call to make? At this point, I'm quite emotional so I can't make a good decision.

What are my options? If I were to write this letter, how can I word it in a polite, but firm, manner? What do I tell my child? Clearly, I need to tell her something about how to deal with this boy.

metallicafan:
If I were in your situation,  I would speak to the principal in person, regardless of the other parents.  I would ask exactly what steps are going to be taken to ensure my child's safety.  I would make it very clear that what happened is unacceptable and that it will not happen again.

kudeebee:
I am sorry that this is going on.  Your daughter should not be placed in danger of being hit, having her items destroyed, having her learning disrupted because of one student.

Is there more than one kindergarten class in this building? 

I would not write a letter to the principal, you need to go in immediately and speak to him in person.   Write down what you want to say.  Focus on what has happened to your dd--being hit, having things destroyed, how it is upsetting you.  Mention that you know the teachers are doing their best, but your first concern is for your dd and you cannot allow this little boy to keep hurting her and making her fearful.  Then, if there is another class in the building, request that your dd be pulled from this class and put into another one immediately.  If you do not get this to happen, I would thank the principal for his time and then move up the ladder.  If you do not get her moved, I would pull her from the school and put her in another one.

If there is only this one class, I would move my dd to another school immediately.  Her safety is important and what is happening in this classroom with this boy should not be taken lightly.  It sounds like the teachers are doing what they can, but have no support from the principal.

Good luck.

lorelai:
I hope this doesn't constitute legal advice, but if this happened to me I'd seek legal advice/recourse since what you described sounds like physical assault.

cicero:

--- Quote from: kudeebee on July 31, 2014, 02:25:42 AM ---I am sorry that this is going on.  Your daughter should not be placed in danger of being hit, having her items destroyed, having her learning disrupted because of one student.

Is there more than one kindergarten class in this building? 

I would not write a letter to the principal, you need to go in immediately and speak to him in person.   Write down what you want to say.  Focus on what has happened to your dd--being hit, having things destroyed, how it is upsetting you.  Mention that you know the teachers are doing their best, but your first concern is for your dd and you cannot allow this little boy to keep hurting her and making her fearful.  Then, if there is another class in the building, request that your dd be pulled from this class and put into another one immediately.  If you do not get this to happen, I would thank the principal for his time and then move up the ladder.  If you do not get her moved, I would pull her from the school and put her in another one.

If there is only this one class, I would move my dd to another school immediately.  Her safety is important and what is happening in this classroom with this boy should not be taken lightly.  It sounds like the teachers are doing what they can, but have no support from the principal.

Good luck.

--- End quote ---
this except honestly the teachers aren't doing their best. their best would be to ensure the safety and well being of all the kids - not just focused on the one child and letting the others get hurt. they may be doing all they can do under the circumstances but it sounds like that kid either needs to be in a different environment or needs a special aide by his side while in school. I feel for the other child, and i feel for his family - my DS went through his own issues in school, though never anything like that and he (and I) at least cooperated with the teachers so we were always able to work out a plan that worked.

as for not wanting to move her because she chose this school? your first priority is that your dd is in a safe and healthy environment - this isn't it (at this moment). I think the long term effects of her being hit and bullied by a class mate greatly override any sadness over leaving the school she chose. at age four, you could "help" her "choose" another school - usually pretty easily.

good luck!

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