Ear ache is what I have from being on the telephone all day!
After yesterdays incident with big girl at school it left me in quite a panic. I started off this morning by calling the school Senco, she told me she’d been filled in by quite a distressed teacher about the events of the day and she herself sounded quite worried about the situation. She openly admitted she didn’t have much experience or knowledge about self harming and was not sure how best to support big girl. She talked through the various different options she would usually opt for, but felt that because she was already ‘under’ CAMHS, they should be the first port of call. She expected they’d arrange an emergency appointment to see big girl, I was less optimistic. She also hoped CAMHS would help school with how best to support big girl with her emotions, again, I was less hopeful. I agreed to call CAMHS and report back to her.
CAMHS lines were busy, I left a message for them to call me.
Feeling impatient I decided to call the placing authorities post adoption support team, on the off chance that they’d care. They didn’t.
I called CAMHS back again and was passed to the duty worker, in the absence of our therapist who only works Mondays and Tuesdays, how useful. The duty worker was very softly spoken and in a very kind tone she pretty much said ‘I don’t know, I can’t be bothered to find out more, its not my job, I’ll get your therapist to call you Monday’. Great, thanks a lot!
I called the parent support worker and left a message for her to call me.
I received a call from the Salt (speech and language therapist) who told me she’d been in school today to observe my big girl’s social difficulties. She was pleased to inform me that she’d seen her on the playground chatting to some peers and sharing their magazine with them and felt there was no real cause for concern and planned to discharge her, of course 10 minutes is plenty of time to asses her isn’t it! What she hadn’t been aware of during her short observation, and what I later discovered, was that the ‘peers’ she was chatting to, were part of the buddy scheme reinstated today, and If she had taken the time to talk to the school staff during her visit she would also have known about yesterday. She didn’t. She hasn’t discharged her.
So back to the school Senco I go, I fill her in on the useless ‘professionals’ assigned to support us and we talked about options. She’s going to make a referral to the Educational Psychologist for September but warned me that she’s not likely to receive much support as a result of this, the school themselves had only had 12hours of the Ed Psyc’s time since September and even that was divided between several children. We also discussed getting a statement for her emotional and social needs and she said the Ed Psyc would possibly be able to support this decision. Finally we talked about how it might be an idea to reduce the time big girl spends on the playground and perhaps, in the absence of lunch clubs for her to attend, they could find her some ‘jobs’ to do at lunch time (as this is when big girl struggles most) i.e help in nursery, tidy the library, help clean up the dinner hall. All sounds like child labour I know but I can assure you worried readers that she’ll love anything like that, it could even boost her self esteem by helping her to feel useful/valued in school.
So where does that leave us now?
We’re awaiting a call from the therapist next week. The PSW has a message to call me. And the school will continue their struggle to support her with the limited resources and experience they have. The school Senco is in a bit of a panic and feeling as worried as me I think.
And post adoption support (ha!) they still have their heads in the clouds thinking everything is ok.
Big girl, well she is still trying to hold herself together, her walls higher than ever, still unable to trust the people around her.
And me, I have a headache, again.