“My son’s school won’t listen to my concerns”

I know every parent thinks their child is exceptional, but I was told early on in my son’s school days that he was very bright and he did well at his infants’ school. The problem started when he moved up to primary school. It seemed to be really nice and other parents are satisfied but I am watching my bright, happy boy change before my eyes. He is desperate to keep in with the other kids and has turned into something of the class clown in an effort to be popular. He was initially bullied because he was genuinely interested in lessons and used to do some work at home in preparation. Unfortunately, this was not appreciated by the other children or, indeed, by the teachers, who seem to want everyone to coast along at the same level. I’ve tried to talk to his teacher but got the impression my interest was not welcome. Now I feel we ought to look for another school but he takes fright at this and begs to stay where he is. A private school is out of the question for financial reasons. Charlotte

Denise says:

I’m sorry that you haven’t been met with co-operation from your son’s teachers. Co-operation between parent and teacher is the solution to this and many other problems and they ought to understand your anxiety. I suggest you ring the helpline of the Good Schools Guide (goodschoolsguide.co.uk, 0845 450 0221) who understand the problems that can face the parents of gifted children. I’d also make an appointment to talk with the school’s head teacher. Outline your anxieties and see what he or she has to offer. I’d only consider a move once you’ve exhausted any changes the school can offer and after taking advice from the Good Schools Guide. It might also help to contact Young Minds (youngminds.org.uk, 0808 802 5544.) This is a valuable service for parents worried about any aspect of their child’s psychological well-being. In the meantime, remember children are very resilient. Although you’re right to want this sorted, never doubt your child’s ability to survive and eventually thrive.


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