The inspector who deals with these things came along and went through the decision. Basically, James is NO WHERE NEAR an exceptional case. Going into his file, he is about 2 TERMS behind other kids in his class. The struggles he has are very much in line with the “normal” guidelines and she herself would expect to find at least 2 children in every class with the same difficulties regarding concentration, struggling to write and being behind on reading.
The school were concerned about James not currently being in the “stage 1” category for year 1. His levels on reading, writing and maths are still on “P” levels (paediatric – younger years levels). James is currently sitting at P8, P7 and P8 respectively. She explained that it’s normal for children to be one stage behind in writing and on her sheet of levels, there were 4 categories of levelling. Section A: regards the children at a “average” and “above average” level (ie 1C. 1B, 1A), Section B: P8, P7, P6. Section C: P5, P4, P3 and Section D: P2 and below.
James falls into Section 2, areas of SLIGHT concern. For him to get one to one help and the school to get additional funding (Which I am sure is the REAL reason for all this) James needs to have at least one level in section D, and the other marks in Section C.
She even said that in many schools, James would not even be getting extra help in class as he is at the moment as he is still in a reasonable band for his learning. Being a little behind is common in the younger years, especially age 6 when the concentration of a young child is still work in progress and a learning curve that lasts years so she is not at all concerned that he isn’t taking things in.
Further to that, with the difficulties James does have, the school have some programmes already in place to help him with the things he finds hard. He has speech therapy, extra physical activities and extra writing help to get him better with his fine motor skills. As the school are doing all the right things, the powers above see no need for extra provisions.
James is continuously improving. His reading is really strong all of a sudden and he is learning rather quick. He is asking many questions now relating to what he has done in the classroom this week. I don’t know if we will get another report at the end of the year with revised learning levels but I am so proud of my little man and how he has progressed this year.