Options – Sat 23rd Jan 2016

By | January 23, 2016

I’ve sat on my hands about writing on this subject, but on the basis of “better out than in”, here goes.  It might be that someone reading this has had a similar experience with their high-functioning teen.

T is now in year 8 and, as his school sit exams a year early, his options for subjects to take to exams are being decided in this school year, by mid next month in fact.

For the pupils, I guess this has the advantage that there is the focus on those preferred subjects earlier and, I presume there is the chance to retake a GCSE the following year if the first attempt doesn’t hit a particular grade – this benefits both the pupil in that the eventual grade is better and the school grade-wise.

Where T is struggling – and has done so since September – is that he is very clear in his mind about the subjects he does want to take further, similarly those he doesn’t.   As a consequence, those he doesn’t wish to study aren’t being given the focus that the school requires from him nor the homework.

I can see his viewpoint (and he makes his views very clear).  In his eyes, he just wants to focus on the chosen subjects.  But I can also see school’s, they still have an expectation of him and it’s probably raised, bearing in mind that we had to appeal to get him into that school.

There is a particular subject he struggles with, Food Tech (cooking!).  He has a lot of sensory issues and doesn’t like handling the ingredients to prepare it, has no interest in tasting the end result and therefore can’t evaluate.  It’s taken a while, but on this grounds, we seem to have a reprieve.  We’re extremely proud of him for having a go during the lessons and completely understand just how much he must be masking throughout.

But how to solve this particular problem we’re facing at the moment?

School have put him on homework report a couple of times, which has only resulted in him becoming very frustrated and embarrassed as this involves his handing the card in at the start of the lesson and collecting it at the end.  One particular teacher seemed to enjoy making quite saracastic comments on there, with regard to his work in class, as opposed to homework.  Which did not help.

For now, we’re keeping on, keeping on.  It’s very difficult to talk with T at the best of times and whilst I detest having a (mostly) one-sided raised voice “conversation” (in “” as conversation usually indicates two-way), it had to be done.  Which infuriated him, upset me and didn’t do much for D either (with her, it has to be a softly-softly gentle tone approach, anything else results in tears and a bolt).

So, to appease school, we’re doing our best, overly monitoring, trying to get this situation improved and some breathing space for him.  

It will help.  It’s probably helped me a bit writing this down too Jx 


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