Tuesday, 16 March 2010

A rant about school

I am so angry this evening - school-based incompetency has got me hopping mad. As I'm a part-time working mum, O goes to after-school club one evening per week. They pick him up from school, walk him across the road to the village hall and look after him until I come to collect him after work. This week I'd changed one of my working days, so he was due to go to after-school club today instead of his usual Friday.

At 4.30pm I left work and noticed two missed calls on my mobile from two of my friends. When I rang one of them, she told me that she'd spent 15 minutes waiting outside O's classroom with his classroom assistant, wondering why I wasn't there to pick him up. O was getting anxious and tearful wondering where I was - he still has some leftover feelings from when I was ill where he is a bit protective/clingy about me - and his classroom assistant was just saying, 'well, if she doesn't come, we'll just have to take him to the office'.

The thing is, I'd arranged with his after-school club to pick him up today and I'd written it in his school diary that he was being collected by the club and that I wouldn't be there. So why was O stood outside his classroom waiting for me? Somewhere along the line it seems there was a communication failure between his teachers. What makes it worse is that today's 'good behaviour blob' had been put in his diary - this blob was right next to my note about after-school club, which had either not been read, or not properly noted.

Luckily, the after-school club leader realised O was not where he should have been and came back for him, so he was OK in the end. But to me that's not the point. He's only five and can't be expected to remember when an arrangement has changed - surely that's not his responsibility? I feel cross that my little boy was left  upset and anxious, feeling that I'd forgotten about him, and I am annoyed with his teachers who are supposed to take care of him when he's at school. I know they have 30 children to look out for, but surely they need to make sure what's happening with all the children at the end of the school day. Apparently this isn't the first instance of children waiting in vain for their parents to pick them up when they are supposed to be at after-school club.

Maybe I'm overreacting and being a fussy mother, but I am still seething. I am going into school tomorrow to speak to the head of O's year. I really think that there needs to be a proper system in place so that teachers know where children are supposed to be at the end of the school day.

Sorry - rant over! I think I just needed to have a bit of a vent. I am having a bit of an anxious period lately (all related to the bad stuff) and this kind of thing doesn't help. I am sure tomorrow I won't be so angry, but I will still go in and try and get something sorted so that it doesn't happen again.

EDIT: I have to say, I have no beef with the after-school club peeps who have been great...


  1. I would be seething too. You should expect the teacher to rea his book. I am appauled and would be sending in a letter.

  2. I would be writing a letter too! It's awful to think of your child feeling so alone and abandoned when it's such a simple change to the normal routine. (((Mel))) If they'd read the book, it wouldn't have happened. What is it for if not to communicate? What else might they miss? Yes, it might have been a one off, but it needs pointing out.

  3. Totally unacceptable. I'd be livid as well. Hope you get it sorted x

  4. Thanks everyone - I think you start to doubt yourself when you dwell on something, so it's good to hear that you all would be cross too.

    I'll speak to school tomorrow.

  5. Cross - I would be beside myself with rage!Simply not good enough on part of school, you have every right to feel vexed.