So, I know yesterday I had a complain about school and how they handled DS suggestion that 100% Attendance awards were unfair, illegal, and not very effective at teaching children how to care for their own wellbeing. Because they have always had awards, and what do we SUGGEST they do.
Remember we suggested not having them, and having improved attendance awards, and teaching children about taking care of themselves, and respecting difference and so on?
Well, this morning, I happened to be in school helping another child, who is not mine, and the head teacher approached me. I felt apprehensive, I was sure she had been saving her wrath for when my son was not there… But no!
They thought about his ideas. And they will be trialling a new system! As from next term, they will NOT have attendance awards. They will be trialling some of his suggestions!
This is excellent news. I am very excited to tell him that his ideas stood up to scrutiny and he CAN say something is unfair and be heard.
I do wish they would tell him themselves, but, he did it, and that will become evident when the policy changes. I do want to celebrate his social conscience, I want him to learn that seeing unfairness to others is a big achievement, and is valuable.
That said, there is also a balance to be struck. He is an awesome child. Awesome is an overused, misappropriated word, but, yes, I am in awe. He has to try so much harder than so many other children in many respects. He has to live with me and my slightly odd, and chaotic and unusual life. He has various limitations, and he overcomes them, differently and creatively every day. But, he also needs to be aware that humility is also valuable. He is not invincible, he has more to learn, he is not superhuman (although he thinks he might be, since he is the only one in the house not swimming in a snotfest, coughish cold) Which brings us somewhat back to the “appropriate challenges” that we spoke about a few days ago.
Still, for today, we celebrate. He stood up and was counted. It mattered. His one voice made a difference today.