Harringay online

Harringay, Haringey - So Good they Spelt it Twice!

Is 7 first year of secondary school child is suffering from anxiety believing he is at school and safe the school office with notifies between 130 onwards to tell me that my child has not attended school he done this for a whole eight days I have now received a letter from b e l services saying that I must attend a school meeting if I don't I can get prosecuted my argument was why weren't they notifying me after registration the type of the notification via text and also said that I was called but did not answer the call first of all it was all the ways from a private number or a number that's I did not recognize with no name and if they called in the morning why did they not send a text why wait to afternoon for me to only find out my son was hiding under his bed until school finished my heart actually broke for him as while I'd be indoors he must have been hungry firstly even once in probably to go away but would not move if the score notified me in the morning straight after registration I could have found him and spoke to him why he was not going to school I have now found out the reason and we are working through it however last week he got very very ill and could not attend school for for days although I have a doctor's certificate they have strongly come down on me thus anyone have any advice thank you

Views: 494

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Hi Jo, I've been through this with 2 children unfortunately. School related anxiety (also called Emotional Based School Avoidance) tends to typically hit around year 7 as it's a big transition.

So, firstly, you are not alone - it's a tough thing to go through, and I am happy to have a private chat about our experience).

Secondly, it's important that you are able to talk to your child and reassure him, as being strict won't help in this situation.

Thirdly, schools unfortunately have automatic procedures in place for truancy which they apply without much flexibility to medical related absences (anxiety/EBSA IS a medical related absence, so ensure that it is classified as authorised absence in their attendance records).

Fourth, find support and advice on what to do on the large Facebook group "Not Fine in School" which also has many resources on what the law says and what your child'r rights, and the obligations of the school and Local Authority are. The school is meant to provide support to identify and reduce the barriers to attendance but the first thing they do is always threaten - that's because they have attendance targets to meet. Also note that if a child is off school for medical reasons for more than 2 weeks, the local authority has a duty to provide an alternative provision (although it generally takes much longer and a lot of pushing). 

Do not worry, I received a threatening letter when my child was in Great Ormond Street Hospital as these systems are semi-automated - it was terribly upsetting and I will never forget that, but of course I was never fined. The key thing is ensuring you speak to the school about what is happening. Please do contact me in a private message if you need more info. 

I just wanted to add it's important to use the right language with the school. If you have a medical certificate (and you should not need one anyway - they should only ask for one if they have reasonable grounds to doubt that the child really was ill) they HAVE to record the absence as authorised. Do not use terms like "bunking off" which implies it's deliberate. If a child hides under the bed for hours that' not a deliberate choice. Link to the FB group (over 50K parents!) https://www.facebook.com/groups/NFISFamilySupport

Thank you so so much for your support and reply I have hands is in a medical certificate but they still want a meeting due to him Bocking of school can you please advise me what's this really bugging me is that I was getting notified after one p.m. and it was never from the school phone number phone calls were either private or the number that's what's coming through was not on my contacts so I did not answer the phone and I would then receive a text message after one 30 p.m or when occasion after reading the text I found a school as I was in panic as it was no almost two o'clock I did not know my son was hiding in the house so after a quick conversation I then received a phone call within two minutes saying they have called the police as he is now a missing child obviously my son must've heard the conversation I quickly see him sneaking Down the Stairs I then cut off and thrown the school within five minutes and told them I walked around the block and saw my son walking home he was in the park it was horrible that I had to lie to them but it really got me angry when they said they have to notify the police however web confronting them why did they let me know after one thirty pm it was because they are very busy that is my argument as well what's advice would you give me what time should a secondary school be calling you if your child does not show up for registration anyway thank you once again

Hi there, I don't have the answer. But I do know those automated systems don't work well and I've had notifications of a child not in school when they actually were. You need to have a conversation with your child so that he understands he can talk to you if he is too anxious to go to school, so instead of hiding under the bed you discuss what to do and whether you can help him go to school (can you accompany him when needed? Some children still need that even in secondary). 

As for the meeting, you do need to attend - the school is doing the right thing because they need to explore the reasons for the low attendance and find strategies and potential adjustments that might help. Please do go on NFIS for advice, too. The key thing is going to the meeting prepared and ensuring that medical absences are treated as authorised. Anxiety is a medical condition and therefore the absence should be recorded as medically related rather than unauthorised (as often happens). Then implement the strategies you agreed with the school and see if they work. If they don't, go back to the NFIS group to see what to do next. Ask soon for a referral to CAHMS if this persists, because there are very long waiting lists. Good luck. 

I was bullied at my local secondary school St Thomas More way back in 1985 and the welfare officer came to my parents house asking why I was not attending school and I said that I was being bullied it didn't faze the welfare officer and informing the teachers about my bullying didn't bother them with so much so left me no choice but to leave St Thomas More at the age of eleven years of age.

Really sorry to hear that you and your child are going through this. As others have said, there are many children struggling in this way. I would add to the other advice that you get in touch with SENDIASS as Markfield Park. They support parents and families and you could ask for someone to accompany you to the meeting with school. They are really knowledgeable. Hopefully the school put in support and that might be enough.


Telephone 0208 802 2611

I would add that your child is not ‘bunking off’ but struggling with school. 



© 2024   Created by Hugh.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service