The way forward is shrouded in mist but a clear route is emerging.

As we move into the second week of the Year 8 exams we have a clear state of play emerging. Son is trying his hardest, school clearly is not. Son again was upset this weekend as he clearly thought that school sees him as not very bright and a failure. He found out that he came third bottom in his Drama exam. Well was that surprising when he was given only a short period of time to read questions then an equally short timescale to write answers. Absolutely no help was provided. So clearly autism, dyspraxia and dyslexia do not apply in the world of Drama.

Sadly this has not been an isolated incident.

  • In subjects like Mathematics, Design Technology and French he received zero help. No additional time. No help with reading. Nothing. Maybe help was considered but as Son pointed out

One of the kids broke his hand so the one Teaching Assistant had to scribe for him. Maybe that’s why I didn’t get help. I really struggled to read and understand the questions. Even maths had lots of words I didn’t recognise in the questions.”

  • History did not proved a scribe but he was given a laptop to type his answers in. So he still had to try and read the questions. He was given a laptop because the teacher was concerned about being able to read his handwriting. Problem is that son is waiting for some therapy work to try and help with his typing skills. His typing is slow and very inaccurate. He hadn’t practiced answering test questions on the computer. The computer also had the spelling aids disabled. No additional time was provided.
  • Science and English did provide a scribe. He hadn’t practiced working with the scribes provided. He was really uncomfortable trying to work with the two assistants he had previously had very little interaction with. He had thought incorrectly that he was getting extra time but with a couple of minutes to go the scribe just said the exam is finishing when it’s 10.15. He struggles to tell the time using an analog wall clock. The scribe in English only read out the questions. She was not allowed to read out the passages which he had to answer comprehension questions on.

What was the point. The scribe would tell me things like for this question you need to read lines 5 to 12 of the text then describe what writing techniques the author has used. Well I would if I could actually read the text. Some of the text was using slang language – I struggle with proper language, got no chance with slang.”

So basically it’s been a mess. If his marks are not good then this is going to hit his confidence going forward. Currently school are deadpanning my queries but I guess they will just say that appropriate support was provided and he just needs to work harder. Poor results will confirm their assessment of low attainment. I just hope for his sake that he manages to get some decent marks. I’ve told him that for me it’s not he who is being assessed, it’s school. And clearly school have failed – AGAIN. To quote a reasonably popular movie, it feels like that we are moving to the mainstream education END GAME. No we still can’t truly afford to homeschool but this failure of due care can’t go on. Son deserves better than this.

69 thoughts on “End Game

  1. I sincerely wish I could do something to help. I am absolutely speechless which does not happen often to me. I find it appalling the absolute lack of care or education being provided. Whenever you write about school it is so Dickenese in atmosphere. And it kills me that the administrators of the school are so blind. Hugs

    Liked by 3 people

  2. As I read this Gary I was screaming and shouting and yelling at the damned school. I won’t tell you what I was screaming and yelling because it is probably unpublishable but I just felt so angry at what is happening to your son. Words fail me and I wish something could be done to change the situation. I wish that I could help

    Liked by 2 people

      1. as i said really isn’t expensive…you just gotta get creative:) Here they don’t tell you exactly what to teach , just a general daughter utilizes the local library, and does lots of research regarding FREE events that are took a few months, but she has it down to a science now.., spending less than $1,000 per year..lots of free resources online , second hand stores for board games, etc

        Liked by 1 person

      2. wow..they make them take exams there?? maybe it’s an age group thing…my grandson is only 7…from what i gather, the old rules when my kids were growing up required yearly exams. But they had exchanged a LOT over the last 20 years.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. It really annoyed me that the spell check was disabled. Would it have been in the “real world”, outside of the school bubble? I don’t think so! (My thanks to auto correct for sorting out my typos in this comment!)

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I am so sorry you are having to make these hard choices. It was similar for me but in the end my sons mental health ,ade it unavoidable and having got to that point it was such a relief when we did start home ed although it has been (and still is) a constant financial struggle. On balance the amount of happiness now in the house out weighs the lack of money.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. I did it as a single parent although of course his dad was around a little it still made it a harder choice so I understand that.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. It’s not that your son has to ‘try harder’ … it’s the education system that’s letting your son down. As I read of his situation, I feel anger and frustration – I can’t imagine how it makes you feel to see him go through this. I have a feeling that, when he leaves school, that’s when he’ll begin to blossom … but I know that doesn’t help much just now and it shouldn’t be like this.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. This is terrible. Just terrible. He is such a bright boy from all you say here and all he needs is a hand put out to him and …it’s not help, as such…it is just it should be different because that is the way he learns.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. It does not bear thinking about really in some ways . But that is not in any way to lessen your situation. I just often think, put the rest aside,if someone has your back, it is everything, you know, wherever you are and however you stand, or indeed the world turns, or doesn’t. So, if you don;t have that you are in deep asterisks. (Being very polite here.)

        Liked by 1 person

  7. Where do you live?
    The school are definitely failing to provide support and depending on where you live whether they’re obligated to, too (I know in the UK they pretty much have to). This made me so sad to read. I wish I knew more, I hope you can ask people for help because your son deserves the help.
    There are loads of people I know with learning issues who are not stupid at all. I know that there are books on dyslexia written for dyslexic children – picture form – to help them understand what they’re struggling with.
    Love, light and glitter…..

    Liked by 1 person

      1. 😦 I know how hard it is to get an EHCP. I thought once one had one, then the schools have to request the provisions. It’s the schools place to ask for it. It is possible for a parent to do but not simple at all. It makes me sad to hear how they aren’t helping at all. What are they in education for? And sad for your son. He deserves more. I really hope that there is something you can do – even if not in the school, so that he knows his marks don’t define him. Sending hugs and strength and sunshine…

        Liked by 1 person

  8. My heart goes out to your son every time I read one of these posts. I’m afraid he’s not going to have any self-esteem left at the end of this. Your schools don’t have special education classes? Or doesn’t he qualify?

    Liked by 2 people

  9. It’s so sad to see this. You could just as easily be talking about my own son’s time at school – he’s 32 now, so I see absolutely nothing has changed in nearly 20 years! There is no special needs help in education, they are still paying lip service to it. There isn’t the funding and reading this, there STILL isn’t the understanding either. It’s shameful that parents are having to constantly fight tooth and nail to get the help their children deserve. Good luck and my heart goes out to both you and your son, I remember it all so well.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. The system is all wrong. We should be lifting our kids up not letting them down. How can you become a teacher and have such little compassion? Every kid learns differently, and some a bit more but we just look the other way? No! Do your job be the teacher. This really upsets me. Your son deserves so much more. And he should never think he failed. The system did. Hugs my friend.

    Liked by 1 person

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