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Thread: Not going to school?

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Aug 2007
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    Melbourne
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    2,659

    Default Not going to school?

    Hi, i need some advice please

    wont go into all the background, but we (Dh and I) believe that DSS is not gong to school much atm as his Mum isnt taking him...
    Last year he was absent over 30 days and i know that last week he didnt go to school until 10am one morning as she slept in and he only went one other day (he told us).

    DSS is 10 and not really bothered by it (who would be, he gets to play all day) but we are concerned as he will fall behind.

    We have him every 2nd weekend, but would be prepared to have him all the time (especially at the moment while she cant seem to get her act together) so that he is being properly cared for. But i dont think that she will give him up - she needs him to do things for her (but thats another vent that doesnt need to be in here ) and she would get less attention (she uses him as a poor me) and money...

    We dont have any contact with the school, for no other reason than she changed his school and then enrolled him without listing our details.

    Anyone got any ideas???
    Where should we start? by calling the school?

    thanks


  2. #2

    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    Country Victoria
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    Default

    well i would give the school a ring. Even though u may be his step mum.. u are with his dad. So it would be best for his dad to ring. Schools are funny like that, they dont like giving out personal information. Ask the school if u and DH could come in and see the social worker. Talk to the social worker about ur concerns and see if they will send some letters home with DSS to his mother stating that he has been absent so many day and its not acceptable iykwim. To me, a 10 y/o not going to school is a big issue. Have u tried ringing his mother and talking to her about this or is she one of them mothers??!? iykwim. Also u could try get an appointment with the principal. Dont tell them when u ring that ur not on DSS file, wait till u are in there. then they cant get rid of u so easy....
    HTH..

  3. #3

    Join Date
    May 2007
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    Brisbane
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    Default

    You're right to be worried, missing school especially at 10yo can lead falling behind and also to really bad school and study habits, which become really significant once high school starts. Good on you for addressing the issue now.

    Ringing the school would be the first thing, though they may not talk to you if you aren't listed as a contact (I am contact for my two brothers, and they always make sure that I am on their file before I can speak to anyone) for privacy reasons. You could try going down there, with proof of relationship (birth certificate, access agreements etc) to show you are in his life and not a safety threat.

    Chat to the social worker/guidance counsellor about it, a face-to-face interview is always best I find as they can't just ignore you or tell you they'll call back later (and hardly ever do ). If not with them, then the Principal.

    If you aren't able to to talk to anyone because you aren't listed as a contact and they can't add you for whatever reason I would talk to your local child services. Not to report her or anything nasty, just as an anonymous person wanting information on this kind of circumstance. They will be able to tell you where you stand.

    HTH.

  4. #4

    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Perth
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    Default

    SJ the first thing I would do is set up a meeting with the teacher and find out how he is going and how often he is attending. You and DH need to do this and then perhaps the school will deal directly with you. You may want the principal to be present as they are the people who have the authority to contact social workers etc. If they know you are supportive then they will work with you to improve the situation.

    Any absence from school is detrimental because they miss chunks of teaching and may not understand a particular maths concept etc because of this. It could also be affecting him socially because it makes him different from the other kids. It doesn't set up good patterns for high school and from my experience these are the kids that fall by the wayside once they move to the big school. If parents don't value education then usually the kids don't.

    The princiapl could also talk to his mother and say if he doesn't attend school regularly then he would have to contact the authorities. My Deputy Principal would ring the homes of kids he knew would stay home for no particular reason or because their parents would let them and this resulted in a much better attendance (They always answered the phone). She doesn't need to know that it has come from the two of you.

    HTH

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Aug 2007
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    Melbourne
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    Default

    Thanks girls,

    I am picking DSS up today, so will see how much he has been at school - i know he went Monday as i took him, and is going today as i am picking him up

    Will then take it from then, Oh and i think that we are listed as contacts as we get reprts... was thinking maybe would wait until next report comes in a few weeks as it will list the number of days absent and then take it from there...

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