Monday, 16 February 2015

Who flicked the switch?

Since returning to school in September big T has changed. At the end of last year his teacher noted that his medication for his ADHD was wearing off at dinner time. What happens is during dinner time he runs around like there is no tomorrow and the adrenalin of all the fun he is having totally overrides his medication. At home this is not a problem. We know him, we see the triggers and nip it in the bud straight away. School on the other hand have not mastered this fine art and I do not expect them to; how can they when they have many other pupils to watch over at the same time.

Over the summer holidays we got his medication upped slightly ready for a new term at the request of his old teacher. This year would be a strange one for big T. He was moving up from the class he had started when he was just 8 years old. Now a teenager he was going in with the big boys and we knew that we would hit problems. I knew he would challenge the older boys. I knew the older boys would not take too kindly to a boy smaller in size squaring up to them and giving them attitude. What I was not prepared for was the challenging behaviour he would now display to his teachers. A few weeks in the teacher reported that he was in too much of a zombie like state in the morning and requested the medication to be dropped down. This I did not agree with, during the morning if you kept him busy he could focus on the task ahead at home and by lunch you could see it would start to wear off. We felt like we could not win either way so allowed them to drop the medication down. 

During the time that he was on the higher dose there was an incident at school. I don't know why he got himself so worked up but he made a run for it from school. Of course the teacher stayed with him and big T gave the teacher a torrent of abuse which appalled me. He was threatening to throw stones at the cars and threatening the two teachers that were now trying to keep him calm. This boy I did not know, he never reacts like that at home. After the incident we did tell them that this all occurred whilst he was on the higher dose so to be aware of him becoming more of a challenge when the medication was dropped.

I wanted to be proven wrong. However a recent meeting with the school shown us that his behaviour was worse. Over the course of a few months he had repeatedly:

  • Ran across the tables in class
  • Run down the halls opening every door along the way
  • Sworn at teachers
  • Kicking furniture
  • Hitting teachers and pupils
To say I was shocked is an understatement. We asked them to report his behaviour each evening to us so we can then ensure he is not allowed his tablet/pad when he is naughty and praise when he is good. Thankfully despite their heavy workload they do this and as of the last two days of term he shown improvement.

What shocked me so much is that he does not do this at home. He would not dream of hitting an adult or swear directly at us. Yes he would swear on the odd occasion and apologise right away and he would try to get a rise out of his two eldest sisters; sometimes he would be triumphant. However his behaviour at home was in complete contrast to how he behaved in school.

My beautiful boy
This is one of my favourite images that the school
have ever sent home with him

I hope that by working together we can make his school time more pleasant and for those that teach him to not be met with such challenging behaviour. I honestly do love his school, they have been amazing, I take my hat off to every member of staff. I am certain we can get his behaviour back on track by working together.