All posts by Simone de HooghAll posts by Joanna Merrett

This page is giving you direct access to the posts of parents sharing their experiences with education and the posts of the professionals Joanna Merrett and Simone de Hoogh.

Parents of neurodiverse children might on and off contemplate outside of the box educational options. This might be considering moving as a family to change schools as the only reason, towards exploring other types of school, e.g. alternative schools, special schools, or negotiating flexi schooling (where children are partly schooled and partly home educated) with the current school or finding a school that is allowing flexi-schooling, or contemplating home education, including finding tutors and mentors that also cater for the needs of our children to boost their confidence or a combination of those for a lot of reasons.

Mentioned reasons by parents

  • I doubt if this school is a good fit for my child, I feel his teacher doesn’t like his quirkiness and due to his dyslexia all her attention goes to mend that without offering any other ways to develop his skills
  • My child is very unhappy at school, she is very polite and well behaved when she’s there and when she’s comes home she bullies her younger brother and has huge meltdowns, and as a response to our request to see if they can allow her to go someplace safe if she feels overwhelmed, and school is now suggesting it has to do with our parenting
  • Our middle child is being bullied in school for the second year, the school tries their best, but nothing really changes
  • At school they see my boy as a trouble maker, not as a child that needs a good intellectual challenge to be engaged with combined with a lot of movement
  • The Special Educational Needs coordinator doesn’t take the high ability of my child into account, after reading the report  she commented “It’s scandalous that they give you such wrong information” [about a twice-exceptional child, highly able in combination with ADHD] and refuses to offer more challenging work or make any allowances as recommended
  • The eldest flat out refuses to go to school, what now?
  • My child would fare much better with some more kind attention instead of the constant criticism for not being able to concentrate or distracting others, I wish there was just more space for him to be who he is 
  • You know what my son says? “The school is filling my head, it’s noisy and it stinks, it’s awful to have to go there every day, I wish it was lockdown again” 
  • The teachers couldn’t cope with my child anymore and exclusion followed, what do I do now?
  • My daughter is so tired after school, we’ve been to the GP several times for her headaches, and every summer holiday the headaches mysteriously disappear

Sadly sometimes the strengths nor the characteristics of neurodiverse children are not well known to educational professionals and therefore neurodiverse children are sometimes not understood, appreciated nor effectively supported and too much attention might go to the challenge of our children to adapt to the demands within the school system in a not helpful way. 

Exploring outside of the box educational options is quite common amongst parents of neurodiverse children and contemplating outside of the box educational options is often considered empowering in the sense of growing knowledge about possible ways forward to choose from and how to go about that. 

If you would like to contribute to the Outside of the box Education Corner, please contact the coordinator of publications Tine.

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