I’ve never actually spoken to the head but she is lovely. Formidable, but lovely.
We started the form which was done without the questions. Each section was done purely on strengths and needs. It was hard to hear the school’s view of dinky. The look on the deputy’s face when behaviour and independence was brought up, as a parent, was devastating. The deputy has seen dinky first hand. I don’t think I have heard the word challenging so much in my life!
Dinky is slightly behind in her reading, and is behind in PSE in particular managing feelings and behaviour , and listening and attention, which are below age related expectations.
We went through dinky’s strengths and weaknesses in every section. The deputy was diplomatic but needed to accurately describe what happened at school. When it comes to what happens when she is home, I let them know. I had to tell them everything. It was in Dinky’s best interests.
The head teacher was very kind when it came to my own insecurities as a parent, my mental health and the wider family question. It was very hard to discuss some of those things, but again, it is for dinky.
When it was all done I left feeling like I’d completed an exam, and failed.
The worst part was as I left all I could hear was “MUMMY!” It took some time, but eventually they managed to get dinky to a point where I could leave.
I did some shopping in the local shop and as soon as I got home I put some soup in the microwave when my phone rang, I didn’t get to it in time but it was a missed call from the school. I phoned back and it was the deputy. She said integrated services had phoned and wanted to know the circumstances of our homelessness. Apparently she was very optimistic that she could at least help with the housing situation a little faster! I couldn’t believe it! The CAF form had only been completed 20mins before hand! She also told me that integrated services have called a CAF planning meeting (professionals only), for the 12th of February! That is 2 weeks away! I couldn’t believe it! In 2 weeks I might have some support plan for dinky!
My head is spinning!
I tried to relax a little before going back to get dinky from school.
When I went to get her the teacher called me in. We sat down and she told me that they were going to take dinky off the normal reward system at school. At present the kids all start on the fluffy cloud. If they are good they move to the sunshine, if they are really good they move to the rainbow. The flip side is, if they do something naughty their name gets written on the grey cloud, and for persistent bad behaviour (like dinky’s) the name goes on the whiteboard. It is possible to have their picture on the rainbow but their name on the whiteboard. They don’t agree with taking the previous achievement away, however this works both ways as the child will not get their name removed from the board. Every day this week dinky has been on the whiteboard.
So new strategy! Dinky is to have 5 mins in one minute disks. If she is good she gets more minutes, if she is bad she gets minutes taken away. At the end of the day she can use her minutes to pick an activity to do.
I brought up the contact book, and the teacher said that’s fine, but it has to be manageable. So she will do a book and tell me he minutes dinky has. If she has done something bad that will go in the contact book. For instance… Today dinky had to write her name and the teacher had 5 other children to get started in the group. Dinky refused point blank to do it. It took a while but the teacher managed to get her to do her name but she crossed it out and began scribbling. So the teacher said she was going to tell the deputy and went off. In that time dinky wrote her name nicely.
So stuff like that will go in the book.
I asked about the chewing. Apparently dinky does it quite a bit. I told the teacher about the necklace and she said it was a good idea and would ask the deputy if dinky was allowed it in school.
We had a little chat and it seems dinky is getting on ‘better’ with the teacher, but still not doing as she is told. However I did say I had noticed dinky had been ‘more compliant’ when it came to group was in her reading diary and the teacher laughed. She said she loved reading dinky’s reading diary as it had the best comments! I don’t know if that is my version of what happens or some of the things I put down that dinky says about the books. To be honest I thought she was getting annoyed because I kept asking for more printed sheets for the diary. However this time she was prepared and put 3 sheets in!
I guess it has been a very dinky day, but I feel much better knowing things are getting sorted.