Oh dear! Had a horrendous day yesterday. Callum had a huge meltdown. Hasn’t had one like that since school. Was crying, hitting himself, screaming, swearing and generally getting so upset it was horrible. Why I hear you ask?
Went for our interview with Tuition Academy after he spent the allotted time on a Sunday to do his test paper (1hr 45mins); met up with Simon, the guy I’d spoken to on the phone and hadn’t been too impressed with, and we sat down to discuss possibilities for Callum.
The man is an idiot! He has no concept of ASD; telling Callum that he had to find coping mechanisms to handle classroom situations otherwise he wouldn’t get anywhere. He doesn’t agree with any other form of education apart from school and the curriculum, so had no concept of home education and even slagged off adult education saying that Callum wouldn’t want to be a class full of 75 year olds who were treating the whole thing as a ‘bit of a laugh’ and not getting anywhere! I remained as calm as I could for Callum’s sake as I liked the idea of him having a class that we could then work on at home for the week in between, but it got worse.
He went on to tell Callum that he ‘should’ be doing at least 10 hours a week of maths and another 10 hours a week on English without everything else he should be doing. I pointed out that an hour in class is equivalent to approx. 20-25mins one to one, but he wouldn’t have it saying that that was ridiculous. He then went on to say that if he was in Grammar school he may have the option to have some one to one, but he would never get it in a comprehensive situation and would have to cope with doing more work as there would be too many distractions! So they don’t get distractions in Grammar then do they?
He told Callum that he had to get exams to go to college after Callum had gently said that that is what he was aiming for and then went on to say that he was leaving it a little late! Bastard!
He was rude, abrupt, didn’t understand anything other than mainstream and was basically calling all the kids he already had going there idiots as he said that, after briefly looking at the test paper Callum had done, Callum would probably know more than most of the kids there, but may know a lot less on other parts! Backward compliment I suppose, but not really the attitude I’m looking for to teach my child. He wasn’t encouraging, gave Callum no credit for what he had already achieved and was commanding towards Callum.
He was rude to me, saying that I couldn’t possibly have success with him as I wasn’t a teacher and that home education couldn’t work. I pointed out that we also have college entrants and university successes which he decided to gloss over and forget.
He then went on to say that Callum should start in a lower group next week with the aim of doing GCSE work next September onwards, but that he would expect him to be ‘putting much more effort into his work than he does now’.
So, he obviously has no concept of ASD or Asperger as you cannot under any circumstances land something like that onto an ASD/Aspi child without far more warning and a period of transition.
He then told me to inform him of my decision within the next 24/48 hours as to what we wanted to do and that he would examine the test paper and send me the result that evening.
I’ve checked my email and still no result has been emailed to me and as to whether we are going to take him up on his offer……he can get stuffed.
Callum came home deflated, upset, angry with himself that he can’t cope with stuff and is stupid, hit himself around the head and crying saying that he’s missing opportunities because he’s an idiot!! I felt like all the hard work we’d done over the past 8 years had dissolved in that moment and I could see that if we had decided to go along he wouldn’t have coped at all and we’d have been back to screaming, hitting, punching, etc as he would have tried to hold it together during lessons and then had to let it out when he was ‘released’.
I’m furious as the attitude of the man, I will not be sending Callum there and I seriously wouldn’t recommend the place to anyone with children who have ‘issues’. I can’t speak for the teachers themselves as we didn’t meet any of them.
It took Callum over an hour to calm down and he was subdued for a while afterwards. He even apologised to me later on in the evening for his behaviour at which point I told him that his behaviour was to be expected after having to deal with such an ignorant man.