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Author Topic: 6 Year Old Kicked Out Of School  (Read 15050 times)
Star
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« Reply #44: October 16, 2009, 03:12:27 pm »

I don't know why some schools are so worried about failing a year being so painful or shameful, especially in elementary school. 

What's interesting is that I don't hear much about skipping ahead being also painful or shameful, and yet it was my experience that it could be.  Don't get me wrong, it turned out OK in the end.  But for years I was behind my classmates in terms of maturity, and it got really embarrassing in high school when people started hitting the milestones of 16 (able to drive) and 18 (most other adult rights and priviledges, except for drinking alcohol) and my being a year young was painfully obvious despite my maturity having caught up with most of my classmates--and even surpassed several, if I do say so myself.

That said...  I think probably it's not so much the fact of being a year off (one way or the other) from one's classmates as it is the fact of having had some change, any change, happen.  I also had awkward years when I changed schools, which happened three times even if you don't count the normal moving up from elementary to middle and middle to high school.  We had one or two kids who had illnesses with visible effects (such as hair loss) that the school at large didn't know about or understand, and they had trouble too.  In high school we had at least three people in my class get pregnant that I can think of, and they had their own adjustment issues.  I didn't personally hear of anyone who got teased for lacking one parent or the other at our school, or for a sudden loss of household income rendering them "poor", but I've heard of such things happening in a more general sense.  The list goes on. 

Any time something happens that highlights you as different, you run the risk that it'll get you teased and picked on.  Most kids, I think, will weather the social effects of that and come out the other side OK.  (The consequences of the event that caused it outside of the school social sphere might be another matter, of course.)  They might have a rough time for a while, but most kids seem pretty resilient, especially if they have good social support systems (parents, teachers, friends, family) in place to help them deal.  (They might not make that much use of those support systems directly--I almost never talked to my parents about all this--but just having an otherwise stable environment to retreat to helps.)  And while being "different" in some way can be difficult, well, so is feeling dumb because you can't manage the classwork for the grade you've been pushed into when you really could've stood to repeat the previous one, I'd imagine.

And there's also the chance that a change won't have universally negative effects.  The girl in my class who had been held back enjoyed a brief stint as one of the coolest girls in our class despite being completely outside of the "popular" crowd--she had her driver's license a year before everyone else.  One of our teen pregnancies was the class president.  There was another kid who moved into our school senior year who was actually very slightly younger than me, and he being a generally less socially-awkward person than myself, everyone thought his youth was cute and cool.  Etc.  Different kids deal with different things in different ways.

...I'm just babbling at this point, so I'll just stop and hit post now.  LOL
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