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NFIS 2018-07-09T16:12:09+00:00

ABOUT US

Not Fine in School has been created in reaction to the growing number of children who are struggling to attend mainstream school. Whether their struggle is due to anxiety, unmet Special Educational Needs, physical illness, bullying or academic pressure, many children are experiencing increasing difficulties within education systems in the UK, and other countries around the world.

We are parents and professionals working in partnership to raise awareness of school attendance difficulties.

SCHOOL REFUSAL AND ATTENDANCE DIFFICULTIES

School refusal is now a very real issue for children and their families.
– We want to help them.

We strongly believe that school should inspire children and promote their wellbeing and happiness.
– We want things to change.

OUR AIMS

We aim to promote policies and practices that allow parents and professionals to work together. This is vital to ensure the individual needs of children and young people are recognised and met within suitable educational environments.

OUR NAME

The name ‘Not Fine in School’ relates to the phrase professionals often use when describing children and young people who are struggling to attend – that they are ‘fine when they are in school‘. Families find this is not always the case as children and young people learn to ‘mask’ or suppress their true feelings until they are home.

An increasing number of children are not ‘fine in school’. Some struggle to attend regularly; some struggle to attend at all. These children and young people are often referred to as school refusers or school phobic. They want to attend school, but for a variety of reasons they just can’t. It doesn’t help that many schools regularly describe these children as ‘fine in school’, as some may hide their difficulties, hold them inside until they get home, or simply refuse to attend unless they feel well enough to cope. It is difficult to know exactly how many children are affected, as different reasons for non-attendance are not recorded in official records. Many families feel they have no choice but to remove their children from school rolls, either for their child’s welfare, or to overcome legal issues surrounding attendance, and they have to opt to home educate instead.

Read More

WAYS TO HELP

We feature current petitions, surveys and group actions below that offer ways you can help children and families who are ‘Not Fine in School’ – thank you.

Petition

Sign this Petition

Stop School Cuts

Sign this letter

EHE petition

Sign this petition

June 2018
Parent Carers Nationally

Breaking News from Somerset SEND

We have secured non-profit legal support for exploring group claims that parents of SEND children may have against their councils.

This means at no cost to parents a group action could be taken against your local authority on your behalf.

We would like to speak to Somerset parents first please but everyone who thinks they have been mistreated are welcome to reply and we will collate and act accordingly after Somerset.

Please see the below link to provide some background information for the legal team and please share share share:

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSf3IeKDiIOr_x38RGuj31V-PJ9zY3WBR5fO1Zch9lMgoAuoVw/viewform

Join this Group Action

RESOURCES

NOT FINE IN SCHOOL GUIDES
NFIS Guide For Parents
NFIS Parents Guide (Summary)
NFIS Guide For Schools
NFIS Schools Guide (Summary)
Parent full guide
NFIS Parents Guide (Full)
NFIS schools guide full
NFIS Schools Guide (Full)
SCHOOL ATTENDANCE SURVEY RESULTS
NFIS Survey Summary
NFIS Survey Summary
NFIS Survey Report
NFIS Survey Report
OTHER RESOURCES
NFIS Letter to Friends & Family
NFIS Letter to Friends & Family
NFIS Pick n Mix Template Letter
NFIS Pick’n’Mix Template Letter
Absence letter
NFIS School Absence Authorisation
NFIS Considering HE
NFIS Considering Home Education
NFIS School support
NFIS Effective School Support Strategies
Help in Schools
NFIS Getting Help in School
Anxiety & School Refusal
NFIS Anxiety & School Phobia/Refusal
Red Balloon
Red Balloon of the Air: NFIS questions
Snow
NFIS Snow Closure Days Letter
WITH REFERENCE TO:
Children & Families Act, 2014; Equality Act, 2010; SEN Code of Practice, 2015; The Education Act, 1996; Education for children with health needs who cannot attend school (DfE) ; Mental health and behaviour in schools: Departmental advice for school staff: March 2015 (DfE); Special educational needs and disability: A guide for schools and alternative provision settings; Supporting pupils at school with medical conditions: September 2014 (DfE); Technical Guidance for Schools in England (Equality & Human Rights Commission, 2013); Anxiety UK – Young People and Anxiety; Royal College of Psychiatrists – Mental Health & Growing Up; Measuring and monitoring children and young people’s mental wellbeing: A toolkit for schools and colleges (PHE, 2016); School Attendance (registers and codes) (DfE).

INFORMATION

  • Connect with families and professionals
  • Discuss triggers and influences
  • Share guidance and resources
LEARN MORE

ACTION

  • Campaign and raise awareness
  • Highlight child and family perspectives
  • Change thinking and practices
LEARN MORE

RESEARCH

  • Read relevant research and literature
  • Participate in research projects
  • Support for related studies
LEARN MORE

OUR EXPERIENCES

OUR LATEST STORIES

What does ‘fine’ mean?

What does ‘fine’ mean? By Rosie and Jo’s mum. (courtesy of 'It Must Be Mum') “When she’s in school, she’s fine…..” “Once you’ve dropped [...]

When School Gets It Right

By It Must Be Mum (with kind permission to share here) - We wanted to share this post here as it shows what can [...]

Broken

By Susan Peacock I sent my child to school. They told me they could meet her needs. They told me she was 'fine.' They [...]

NFIS School Attendance Survey Results

NFIS SCHOOL ATTENDANCE SURVEY May 2018 ‘Not Fine in School’ was established in 2017 by parents who are working in partnership to [...]

OUR TEAM

Beth Bodycote

I am mum to two awesome young men who both struggled in differing ways with the school environment. I became involved in school refusal in 2008 when my eldest son transferred from primary school (where he hardly missed a day) to secondary school (where he coped for less than five days). He completed his secondary education with an online school. We spent 6 years trying to understand what had gone wrong and why – involving repeated visits to CAMHS and lengthy waiting lists, frustrations and delays. Eventually, he was diagnosed and accepted help to go to college and university.

During this time, I got involved with online support groups where I discovered we were not alone and there are lots of other families in the same situation. This inspired me to study for an Education Studies degree, then an MA, and I recently started a PhD to research family experiences of school refusal.

I have worked as an Ofsted Registered Childminder and a Teaching Assistant. I have completed training courses in Montessori Teaching; Learning Support (OU); Autism Awareness (OU); Youth Mental Health First Aid; & IPSEA Foundation Knowledge.

Louise Parker Engels

I have three lovely boys- B. (17), L.(13) and L.( 8) each interesting  kind, intelligent and  quirky in their own way – according to a teacher at their former tiny village primary school.  For various reasons they each struggle with school though, so I am happy to be working with Beth and the team  at ‘Not fine in School: Action for School Refusal and Attendance Difficulties’. I try to fit my freelance writing and voluntary work around my boys as they need my support.

A bit more about me

Education:

  • BA (Hons) Government and Politics and Sociology – University of Kent at Canterbury
  • PGCE Leicester University School of Education

Current projects:

  • Special interest in School Refusal, Children with Medical conditions and SEN within Mainstream Schools, and Home Ed
  • Member of the Not Fine in School Management Team

Previous work experience:

  • Primary School Teacher – Senior management team, Early Years · Geography and History coordinator
  • Playworker and Youth worker · Press officer Humanitarian Aid Project Manager
  • HomeStart South Leicestershire management committee member

I love to horse ride, swim, and be near the sea, but don’t actually manage to do as much of that as I would like.

Bec Jasper

Mum of three with considerable experience of School based anxiety/refusal.

A trained MHFA Youth Instructor and passionate about reducing stigma and sharing information with those caring for and working with young people.

Also a founder of PACT (supporting parents of children with mental health issues).

Sarah Lyst

I am first and foremost a mum to 2 children. They are both autistic and have anxiety and depression. They have also both experienced school refusal/phobia/anxiety.

My relevant professional skills and experience:

  • A qualified psychotherapeutic counsellor
  • 2nd year psychology degree student
  • TA in a special school
  • Voluntary counselling experience with young people, some who had SEN
  • Helped to launch a national campaign about autism, including writing articles and doing local radio and TV interviews
  • Voluntary work setting up a local resource library for autistic children and their families

The information contained in this website is for general information purposes only. The information is provided by Not Fine in School and while we endeavour to keep the information up to date and correct, we make no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, about the completeness, accuracy, reliability, suitability or availability with respect to the website or the information, products, services, or related graphics contained on the website for any purpose. Any reliance you place on such information is therefore strictly at your own risk.

© Not Fine in School 2018. All rights reserved.