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Old 21-03-12, 19:14
Lorraine Lorraine is offline
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Hello Everyone!

I’m Lorraine, and my husband Cams and I are just about to start home educating our 5-year-old boy. Hamish had quite a difficult couple of years at nursery, and I was forever being called in at the end of the morning to hear how naughty, rude or uncooperative he’d been. They clearly thought that we weren’t disciplining him properly at home. It was very difficult for us as parents to go through this, as our daughter Freya, who’s 2 years older, couldn’t be more different and is such a well-behaved and sociable little girl.

I asked if the local child psychologist could observe Hamish, as I wondered if he had some kind of autism, but she just said that he’s very bright academically, gets frustrated when his motor skills aren’t advanced enough to do what he wants to do and is very immature socially. However, after speaking to other parents and doing a bit of research on the Internet, I became more and more convinced that something wasn’t quite right, and then someone suggested to me that he might have Asperger’s. This seemed to fit perfectly.

I was very concerned about his starting primary school last August, and so I arranged a meeting with his teacher to discuss my concerns and asked that he be properly assessed. I also said that if school didn’t work out for Hamish, I wouldn’t hesitate to take him out. We are in the fortunate position of one of us being able to work from home – I don’t know how we’d do it otherwise, as we live on a Scottish island and there are no specialist schools here. The teacher was very sympathetic and supportive, and we had meetings with the deputy head and our GP to set the ball rolling. Months later, and we have our first meeting with the child psychologist tomorrow (however, we are still waiting to hear about a referral to Rainbow House in Irvine – we’ve been told it can take months).

In the meantime, things have gone from okay to bad to back to okay to bad again and now to worse… Last week, I was called in twice because of his “bad” behaviour. He keeps finding himself in situations where he gets so frustrated that he’s started hitting out (usually because someone’s upset him). At one point, he was lying on the floor, kicking and screaming and kicked a teacher in the shin. And yet he never reacts this violently at home. He’s told me how much he hates school and that “Six hours is too long.” It’s now got to the stage where it’s a real struggle to get him to school on time, and when we do get there, he screams the place down as the teachers drag him through the door.

Unfortunately, I’ve let people persuade me that it’s best for Hamish to keep persevering and find a way to deal with his behaviour so that he can stay at school. Don’t get me wrong – the school and his teacher have been very supportive, and his teacher has clearly done her homework to help her understand why Hamish reacts the way he does and to find ways of helping him. However, the teachers at the school have no specialist training and seem to be struggling with those children who are a bit “different”. I now also feel that it’s the whole school structure that’s not good for him – there are rules that can’t be broken, and there’s a limit to how flexible they can be and a reluctance to make exceptions to those rules. This requirement to conform and their efforts to make him conform are not helping our boy, so something’s got to change.

This morning, we sent off the form to our LEA to deregister Hamish from school. Apparently, according to Scottish law, we can’t just take him out of school – we have to wait for the consent of the LEA. I’ve been told that this can happen quite quickly – I hope so, as I don’t want him to go back after the Easter holidays. I’m grateful that my husband is behind me 100%. He knows that I’ve researched it well and he also feels that we are acting in Hamish’s best interests.

So, here we are, about to embark on this new adventure. Yes, it is scary, but we’ve read enough about it so as not to be too worried about not being able to live up to the challenge. We’re not going to worry too much about what and how we learn – we’re just going to take it one day at a time and see how it works out. And we’re not going to rule out the possibility of his returning to school at a later stage – once he’s a little older and more mature, he might be able to cope with school better. But, for now, he’s so happy that we’re not going to make him go there any more – he must be so relieved that we’re listening to him at last. And we’re so relieved that we’ve made this decision – it feels right and we feel quite positive about this exciting challenge ahead of us!

I came across this forum a couple of days ago and have been busy reading through a lot of the posts – I’ve already acquired a great deal of knowledge and support from reading what others have to say, so thank you so much! I’m really looking forward to being part of your HE community.

Sorry if I’ve rambled on too long!

Looking forward to getting to know you all!

All the best,

Lorraine
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meus universitas (01-05-12), Sheila Struthers (21-03-12)
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Old 21-03-12, 22:09
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Sheila Struthers Sheila Struthers is offline
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Welcome Lorraine
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Old 22-03-12, 22:39
Lorraine Lorraine is offline
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Thanks, Sheila - nice to meet you!
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Old 23-03-12, 08:59
s836apg s836apg is offline
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Hi and welcome from The Sums :-)
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Old 26-03-12, 07:34
tessgeall tessgeall is offline
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Hi
and welcome from us in sunny Glasgow.
He sounds very like my son was at that age, if he had then gone on to school I am pretty confident he would have some label or other, but at home he is just my rather eccentric amazing son.
He is 16 now and we are off to a local college this morning for a careers meeting to discuss him going full time next year to do some highers and an advanced higher. He is already doing 1 higher there and loves it.
hope it comes through soon
all the best
Tess
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Old 26-03-12, 08:46
Pedagog Pedagog is offline
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Hi Lorraine,

just wanted to say welcome.

My son now 12 spent a year in school, before I deregistered him. He has had a diagnosis of Aspergers since he was 4 or 5.

Caroline
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Old 01-05-12, 10:55
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meus universitas meus universitas is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lorraine View Post
Hello Everyone!

I’m Lorraine, and my husband Cams and I are just about to start home educating our 5-year-old boy. Hamish had quite a difficult couple of years at nursery, and I was forever being called in at the end of the morning to hear how naughty, rude or uncooperative he’d been. They clearly thought that we weren’t disciplining him properly at home. It was very difficult for us as parents to go through this, as our daughter Freya, who’s 2 years older, couldn’t be more different and is such a well-behaved and sociable little girl.

I asked if the local child psychologist could observe Hamish, as I wondered if he had some kind of autism, but she just said that he’s very bright academically, gets frustrated when his motor skills aren’t advanced enough to do what he wants to do and is very immature socially. However, after speaking to other parents and doing a bit of research on the Internet, I became more and more convinced that something wasn’t quite right, and then someone suggested to me that he might have Asperger’s. This seemed to fit perfectly.

I was very concerned about his starting primary school last August, and so I arranged a meeting with his teacher to discuss my concerns and asked that he be properly assessed. I also said that if school didn’t work out for Hamish, I wouldn’t hesitate to take him out. We are in the fortunate position of one of us being able to work from home – I don’t know how we’d do it otherwise, as we live on a Scottish island and there are no specialist schools here. The teacher was very sympathetic and supportive, and we had meetings with the deputy head and our GP to set the ball rolling. Months later, and we have our first meeting with the child psychologist tomorrow (however, we are still waiting to hear about a referral to Rainbow House in Irvine – we’ve been told it can take months).

In the meantime, things have gone from okay to bad to back to okay to bad again and now to worse… Last week, I was called in twice because of his “bad” behaviour. He keeps finding himself in situations where he gets so frustrated that he’s started hitting out (usually because someone’s upset him). At one point, he was lying on the floor, kicking and screaming and kicked a teacher in the shin. And yet he never reacts this violently at home. He’s told me how much he hates school and that “Six hours is too long.” It’s now got to the stage where it’s a real struggle to get him to school on time, and when we do get there, he screams the place down as the teachers drag him through the door.

Unfortunately, I’ve let people persuade me that it’s best for Hamish to keep persevering and find a way to deal with his behaviour so that he can stay at school. Don’t get me wrong – the school and his teacher have been very supportive, and his teacher has clearly done her homework to help her understand why Hamish reacts the way he does and to find ways of helping him. However, the teachers at the school have no specialist training and seem to be struggling with those children who are a bit “different”. I now also feel that it’s the whole school structure that’s not good for him – there are rules that can’t be broken, and there’s a limit to how flexible they can be and a reluctance to make exceptions to those rules. This requirement to conform and their efforts to make him conform are not helping our boy, so something’s got to change.

This morning, we sent off the form to our LEA to deregister Hamish from school. Apparently, according to Scottish law, we can’t just take him out of school – we have to wait for the consent of the LEA. I’ve been told that this can happen quite quickly – I hope so, as I don’t want him to go back after the Easter holidays. I’m grateful that my husband is behind me 100%. He knows that I’ve researched it well and he also feels that we are acting in Hamish’s best interests.

So, here we are, about to embark on this new adventure. Yes, it is scary, but we’ve read enough about it so as not to be too worried about not being able to live up to the challenge. We’re not going to worry too much about what and how we learn – we’re just going to take it one day at a time and see how it works out. And we’re not going to rule out the possibility of his returning to school at a later stage – once he’s a little older and more mature, he might be able to cope with school better. But, for now, he’s so happy that we’re not going to make him go there any more – he must be so relieved that we’re listening to him at last. And we’re so relieved that we’ve made this decision – it feels right and we feel quite positive about this exciting challenge ahead of us!

I came across this forum a couple of days ago and have been busy reading through a lot of the posts – I’ve already acquired a great deal of knowledge and support from reading what others have to say, so thank you so much! I’m really looking forward to being part of your HE community.

Sorry if I’ve rambled on too long!

Looking forward to getting to know you all!

All the best,

Lorraine
Hi Lorraine, I was reading through your post with my mouth wide open. I can't believe how similar to our own story yours is.. I am so pleased you have decided to home educate hamish. It was the best thing i ever did for my son who also has Aspergers.. I had to stay in nursery every day of his 2 year extended stay there... because the staff couldn't "cope" with him, although in our case they were quite unhelpful.. anyway its great to meet you and if you need any advice on Aspergers then please dont hesitate to ask..
meus
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