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Just So I Can Get This Off My Chest

March 4, 2007

This is the letter I wrote to the headmistress – just in case anyone was interested in the thread of over-zealous parents and current day primary school nonsense: (if you are not – ignore or read the archive – or listen to a podcast here!



I would like very much to be able to arrange a meeting with you as soon as possible Monday 5th March 2007. I understand X (my son) and XX (his best friend) were involved in some sort of altercation in the playground with XX yesterday. I know that both of them were told off at the time and both X (him who snores) and I have sat X (our son) down for a serious chat today to get to the bottom of this unacceptable behaviour. Although completely unacceptable in any circumstance it appears that the attack was not un-provoked and unfortunately much as girls can be tomboys I know that boys can be generally much rougher than girls when being physical.

My concern is that I received a phone call late last night from X’s father insisting that he felt the school was no longer a safe environment for his child to be in and because of my son’s actions he was alerting the authorities. He also told me that many other parents in the class have told their children to stay away from X (my son). I’m beginning to feel like we are being unnecessarily marginalised and ‘pushed’ out of the school.

I agree that X has been unsettled especially since joining Yr 1 and it was recently deemed via external inspection that he had lost his confidence. The knock-on effect from that has been huge for him and I have worked very hard with X (teacher) to really turn this round. Things have been recently so much better and he loves X (school) despite the fact he has been very unhappy over the last few months.

I would very much like to discuss this further with you as soon as possible as I feel that the situation is possibly getting out of perspective with regards to the above.

I have taken the day off work on Monday in anticipation that we can meet as a matter of urgency. I would be grateful if someone could contact me on the mobile XXXXX with a time to come in.

Many thanks and very best regards


I’ll let you all know what happens. I’m so angry. I can not believe that people can be so over-protective and wrong. It appears that the girl was chasing my son and kept smacking him on the bottom. He said he didn’t want her to and she wouldn’t stop so he pushed her away and hit her on the arm – unfortunately another child (his best friend) stamped on her foot and called her a crybaby! Fairly normal scrappy playground behaviour but I wouldn’t say bullying. The child told her parents that my son punched her in the stomach and that is why the father has decided to ‘go to the authorities’. It’s ridiculous. Nevertheless I woke up at 05:00 this morning and couldn’t get back to sleep for worrying about it. Furthermore, he and his wife have gone round and told all the other parents leading to ostracisation all round it appears. It’s vile. Hopefully it can all get sorted out from Monday.

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  1. JDA permalink

    Hi RoMo….I’ve been keeping track of this on going saga as it’s unfolding. It sounds both really heavy and very stupid!<br/><br/>Parents of young children are of course very protective and should be, but talk about over playing something very simple and ‘childish’….if the girls parents freak at the slightest sign of a playground incident then they should pause a moment and consider these are children not adults, their motives for doing and saying things are not operating at a rational level…they’re children for fuck sake!!<br/><br/>And why did the parents not come and see you if they were that concerned? no….they instead decided to involve the authorities? (C***S) I’m sure it could’ve been sorted out differently.<br/><br/>Well…however it turns out I wish you luck on Monday…jif.

  2. Geoff permalink

    I bet this bloke’s never told a lie in his life and can’t believe the fruit of his loins would either.<br/><br/>Is he really going round saying it was an unprovoked punch in the stomach? He’s a barrister, isn’t he? Representing his client rather than seeking the truth.

  3. rockmother permalink

    Ooh – goodness – everyone’s on at once!<br/><br/>Jif – Yeah – it’s really crap but I got in there first with the e mail. he’s not planning on writing his complaint until Monday. Hah! The children are 5 years old for god’s sake!<br/><br/>Geoff – You have a very good point and he has broken the cardinal rule of law – contacting the ‘prosecuted’ in private – wrong! I can be very articulate and hold my own if I want to.

  4. Arabella permalink

    So barrister Dad is using the oldest playground trick in the book: organised sending to Coventry. Nice of him to set an example!<br/>It’s horrible being caught up in an unjust situation that escalates. Would comforting treats for you all on Sunday help?<br/>Hugs.

  5. Annie permalink

    I’d like to say something comforting, but the others have said it all v clearly. This man sounds absolutely pathetic (and as Arabella says, is being a bully himself),it must be horrible for you and your little boy, but I’m sure the school will see that. Well done for getting in first. If they let things get to this stage without stepping in, they’re not doing their jobs properly…<br/><br/>With my teacher hat on (and I teach year 1) Year 1 is a really really hard time for kids – there’s even a technical name for it, they call it ‘Transition’. Because of this country’s stupid education policy, they go from the freedom and playing of reception to a much more structured, rigid, pressurized timetable. (If it’s anything like our school, they will have their eye on the SATS levels in Year 2, and naturally the children respond to this pressure.) Poor little sods. Lots of kids find it hard, I bet you a million that many, many other kids in your son’s class are also having a hard time – but maybe the parents are not letting on.

  6. It sounds like the old mountain and the molehill thing to me rm. Whatever you do don’t go bashing the other parent.

  7. Istvanski permalink

    "…Whatever you do don’t go bashing the other parent…"<br/><br/>Exactly. I’d get someone else to do it for you.<br/>;-)<br/><br/>Good luck on Monday.

  8. tkkerouac permalink

    I remember these days!!!!

  9. savannah permalink

    i’d forgotten how insane it can be with young ones….new reader, so until you mentioned you were talking about 5 YEAR OLDS, i assumed older….you’ve gotten great advice from others, so, i’ll just add good luck on monday!

  10. Billy permalink

    Not much to add to what the others said, but just wanted to say, Good Luck on Monday.

  11. Robert Swipe permalink

    "It’s all kicking off over at my place.." she says.<br/><br/>So, muggins here hotfoots it all the way over from Dickley’s (don’t mock – have you ever tried swimming from the Grenadines to I*l*w*r*h in high heels and with a gammy shoulder) expecting to see a grand blog cat fight of epic proportions, fur, erudite reading material and computer software flying in every direction and then I finally get here only to find everyone agreeing with each other about how hard done by Master Ro-Mo Jr. is and how we’d all be a lot better off under a Labour Govt.<br/><br/>I don’t know, what’s the world coming to when you have to go to the school playground to find a decent punch up? Well, there or the Emirates, obviously…)<br/><br/>All I casn say I hope he gave the jumped up little strumpet a damn good pummeling if he’s going to go down for it….<br/><br/>L.U.V. on ya,<br/><br/><br/>Bob

  12. rockmother permalink

    Arabella – thank you – hug accepted and back x<br/><br/>Annie – thank you very much – I’m not a teacher or a child psychologist but even I understand the concept of transition! Philip Larkin was so right – they f88k you up your mum and dad…I’m so glad I don’t have over=protective barrister parents<br/><br/>Dickley – yep! In one.<br/><br/>Ister – are you offering? Man seen outside school gates in Kew acting suspiciously in tall silly England hat and funny glasses whistling I Just Can’t Be Happy Today with gusto<br/><br/>Tkkerouac – Thanks for coming back <br/><br/>Savannah – thank you – I know! They are 5 for god’s sake!! Let them be kids.<br/><br/>Billy – ta Billster x<br/><br/>Bob Bum Wipes – oh shut up yer mithering mother! If you will wear those pvc corsets! I meant more about my weird Thursday night actually. We wound our friend up today by telling him our bathroom collapsed into the kitchen and we had to relocate to a b&amp;b in Staines. He believed us for about three minutes until we put him out of his misery. Luv on ya kidder x

  13. mad muthas permalink

    we had a thing like this in year 2. in fact, the head was furious with the mother for butting in (she was very abusive – and seemed frankly psychotic), and i wouldn’t be surprised if your head is annoyed with this stupid man’s behaviour as well. <br/>my gut feeling is that this man is bullshitting – no-one else probably feels the way he seems to, and he’s making it up. he should NOT have contacted you directly and you need to get the head to tell him to stop. don’t get into an argument with him yourself – he sounds like a nutter and he is completely in the wrong. <br/>keep us informed.<br/>(our thing ended up with the head threatening the mother with banning her from the playground – oh – and she wrote to the secretary of state to complain!!!!)

  14. Jimmy Page's Trousers permalink

    Let me through, I got here late.<br/><br/>I’ve been incommunicado for the weekend but can offer no more sage advice than the great thinkers above. So, as you’re probably already donning your most sensible shoes for the meeting with the head and as brevity is the soul of wit, and tediousness the limbs and outward flourishes, I will be brief…<br/><br/>Good luck.

  15. llewtrah permalink

    Blimey, in our day we were told to stand up for ourselves and fight our own battles. In those days it was all "I’ll get my big brother to sort you out." Nowadays it’s "I’ll get my dad to complain to the authorities to sort you and your parents out." Meanwhile, it’s the kids who lose out.

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