Lifestyle

Suspension queried

SHE WANTS AN INVESTIGATION: Vicki Adams with her son Sean who has autism.
SHE WANTS AN INVESTIGATION: Vicki Adams with her son Sean who has autism. Geoff Potter

THE mother of a seven-year-old boy with autism has called for a full investigation into events leading up to his suspension from a Sunshine Coast school this week.

Vicki Adams' son Sean was suspended from Noosaville State School on Tuesday after he went into an autistic rage and allegedly became aggressive towards other children.

But Ms Adams, of Boreen Point, wants the school to rescind his suspension and wipe it from the record.

She said a system, which was supposed to manage her son's behaviour, failed and he had been unfairly punished.

"It's a process that went wrong and now Sean could be the victim, and I can't let that happen to him, and I can't let that happen to another family," she said.

Ms Adams said she was supposed to be notified of any significant changes in the classroom that could unsettle Sean but was not warned that his class had a substitute teacher on Tuesday.

And a carer who was supposed to be present in the classroom with Sean and another boy with Asperger's Syndrome was not there, she said.

Ms Adams said she had difficulties gleaning exactly what sparked Sean's troubles on Tuesday but was told that his behaviour escalated and he became aggressive towards other children.

She said Sean's behaviour never would have got out out of control had the agreed plan been followed.

The principal had refused to review his decision to suspend Sean and the school had "clammed up" on discussing the matter any further, she said.

Ms Adams has written to the Premier Campbell Newman and Federal Education Minister Peter Garrett, and plans to write to the state education minister, requesting a review of Sean's suspension and an investigation into the incident.

A statement from Education Queensland north coast regional director Greg Peach said the school took "appropriate disciplinary action to ensure the safety and welfare of all students" but could not comment further because of privacy concerns.

"It just makes them more angry. This is one of the worst things you can do to a kid on the spectrum," Barbara Cooke, co-founder of the Sunshine Coast Autism and Asperger's Network, said.

Professor Tony Attwood said suspension could not change an autistic's child behaviour.

Topics:  bullying, suspension




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