Residential schools — Scope | Disability forum
Find out how to let us know if you're concerned about another member's safety.

Residential schools

rainbow7 Member Posts: 5 Listener
edited February 2018 in Education
Hi my son is 12 and has Lennox gastaut syndrome which is very severe epilepsy with challenging behaviour. Autistic traits and a learning disability when he was 10 he became extremely violent and dangerous  . He would put bricks through windows. Hand brake turn my car whilst strangling me. Run out the house into the sea. Through rivers and climb up cliff edges. Attack me regularly. I also have a very shy 6 year old girl who at the time this started was 4. Me and my husband struggled so much. Took parenting classes even though I'm a nursery nurse. Found a social worker. Cahms worker. Early help worker. Swapped him from mainstream to special school. Could not settle him down after a 3 day constant crisis rang the police who took him to a hospital who discharged him and said there was nothing wrong with him. Anyway after that he went to go live with his dad. I personally want him in a residential school as with the best intentions do not think his dad will cope long term which isn't the best thing for my child. He gets parmed of on anyone. Not picked up from school when ill and everytime he's in hospital I end up staying in with him which I am aware he's my son but I can't cope anymore . Does anybody have similar experience s or no away around getting him in a residential school when one parent says there coping but you know your child isn't getting what they need. I still have my son 2 nights a week and he doesn't like it at his dad's. He says he just goes to sleep and doesn't play with him. I would love to have him back but my daughter was been raised in a war zone. She hurt her leg last week from school and the first thing she said was how do I run away from him when he gets angry. As much as he needs me she needs me to. It's been a horrible couple of years. Any advice would be great 


  • JennysDad
    JennysDad Member Posts: 2,299 Disability Gamechanger
    I'm rather supposed to say 'Hello @rainbow7 and welcome to our online community', but somehow that's not enough  :)  I don't have any answers to your specific question, but I'm sure others will be along who can help. Perhaps you might find something through the link

    Otherwise all I can do is to point out that you really are among friends here, so if there is anything you want to say or to ask don't hesitate, and, of course, I can send my love, my respect and my admiration for your having coped with so much.
    Warmest best wishes
  • Pippa_Alumni
    Pippa_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 5,798 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @rainbow7, and welcome to the community! Great to have you here.

    I wonder if @IndependentSupportServices can offer any input with this?
  • ParentingAdvisorVikki
    ParentingAdvisorVikki Member Posts: 45 Connected
    Hi @rainbow7

    What support does he need to keep him calm at school? A residential school may not be the answer for him. you would still have to go to the school if he kicked off and still have to go to hospital with him. I wouldn't say it would make you life any more easy, it may infact make the situation worse. 
    Does he have any external intervention? behaviour therapies? how are you being supported as a family? does your daughter access the Young Carers services?
  • rainbow7
    rainbow7 Member Posts: 5 Listener
    Hi thanks for the advice. When he gets angry he needs to burn himself out so he will run and hit out til he goes to sleep so he needs a large area with high walls. When I try and keep him in the house he puts the windows through to get out and run. I have also tried letting him out to burn the rage of but has no safety awareness so runs through rivers and infront of cars. I just see a residential school as a large grounds he would enjoy but with disguised high walls to keep him safe I'm just so frightened that one day he gets knocked down by a car. He did have lots of camhs intervention but his dad says he doesn't need it now but his behaviour is still the same. Camhs also told me when we were dealing with them there was nothing else they could offer. They agreed it was medical reasons that were causing the extremes of behaviour but the phyciatrist won't prescribe any meds due to the severity of the epilepsy. I just think he would be happy in a residential school hanging about with his peers. As at home he is isolated . Cahms did suggest young carers for my daughter but since my son went to live with his dad all our support stopped. Not that we got much. It's like we don't matter even though my daughter is that timid from everything she has witnessed. My sister used to work in transition social work said they mix the children with like minded children and when they are approaching adult hood find them friends to share houses with that carers can go to. I don't know what to do with him to be honest. if I have him at home it will continue to damage my daughter . If he stays with his dad it continues to damage my son as he doesnt like it there and he doesn't get his needs met. Which isn't his dad's fault he just has high care needs. from what I gather about my son's conditions is that his behaviour Wil only get worse as he gets older. So am trying to be one step ahead to get him the best quality care. 
  • ParentingAdvisorVikki
    ParentingAdvisorVikki Member Posts: 45 Connected
    That is your best option, we try to stay ahead where we can. 

    What sort of thing sets him off?

    Have you been shown any diversion tactics to keep him from going off, and channeling him into focusing his anger and frustration? We gave my older son a box of nails and a hammer up the shed. He used to run. But when he focused on going out to the garden and just smashing nails into a bit of wood he calmed down a lot quicker. He knew the shed was his area and that was only his area. When he got a bit older we upgraded to screws and a screwdriver.  I’m not saying this works for all, and obviously giving him a hammer could be counter productive but it worked with us. 
    Have you tried focusing his energy on something like martial arts or something? 

    He doesnt have to live with you for your daughter to access young carers, she just has to be somewhere he stays. It would give her some well needed independence and something just for her. My girls both go, they love the break from their brothers. 
  • rainbow7
    rainbow7 Member Posts: 5 Listener
    Thanks for the advice yes I'm the master of diversion. He needs permanently diverting in camhs terminology his bucket is always full. I took him to football . A Sen youth club and sports works weakly   he enjoyed them but hasn't shown an interest in anything other than nerf guns which we used to do every weekend but once he got really angry and smashed a gun over my head and when we had to ring the police for his behaviour he was shooting them thinking it was a real gun. so we stopped thought I was encouraging the violence. My daughter goes to martial arts and loves it but I thought I would be training him to be a deadly weapon so thought better of it. Usually I distract him for a few hours he will then go to sleep and wake back up with the same rage
     It's exhausting to continuously distract and divert some body putting loud music on . Dancing silly. Baking activity . Followed by pool and then oh look at the bird out the window. Constant all day . 
  • IndependentSupportServices
    IndependentSupportServices Member Posts: 54 Courageous
    Hi @rainbow7

    There will be a website called the Local Offer which can provide information on school choices, including short or long term residential options, and also schools which are specialist in dealing with behavioural and emotional issues.

    You can do an internet search for 'SEND Local Offer' to find the website for your area.

    I hope you find the right setting for you all

  • rainbow7
    rainbow7 Member Posts: 5 Listener
    Thanks that's great. I have found the school I want . It's at Doncaster and specialises in his condition and is amazing. It's just the transistions period at the moment. His dad needs to come to the same realisation as me that he is safer and recieving better care in a residential school 


Complete our feedback form and tell us how we can make the community better.