The answer is you don’t. When there’s a load of other kids to deal with, the chances of a quiet word to someone who is essentially there to spend an hour trying to a)teach football whilst b)maintaining a degree of crowd control are almost non-existent.
I have been determined to keep the Cheetah’s blog rant free, but today I’m struggling. Whilst both Giles and Alice have “additional medical needs” there is absolutely no need for them to be excluded from mainstream activities and, despite coming from stock that is most definitely not built for speed, their participation in gym/football/trampolining is an integral part in keeping them fit and therefore able to go to school.
To enable both children to partake in these activities I first must form fill. It’s the same form I filled in last year but it must be done again “for the system”. This year the completion of the initial form necessitated the completion of another medical form. One written for adults, although this is no surprise – why would a parent want a child with additional medical needs to enjoy sport – especially when sport is part of their prescribed treatment?
I’ve written 2 sides of A4 about each child, explaining their conditions, what additional support they may need and what to do if something (heaven forbid) goes wrong. Only then could they ‘officially’ take part in the sessions. Now, I’m not expecting every member of staff that could possibly come into contact with my kids to be briefed on their needs – I completely appreciate that there are significant numbers of other kids in those classes who all need to get the most out of each session in order for the parents to feel that their child is achieving to the best of their ability and getting some form of value for money.
Is it too much to ask that the person in charge of the session has at least read the medical form? And perhaps has taken what the form says into some form of account when planning the session – or at least considered the impact of what they will be asking my kids to do on their health? As it is, I find myself sitting in on the session, nosebleed wiping up kit at the ready, supporting Giles as he struggles with co-ordination, keeping up with the others and everything that being the youngest in the class brings. In the meantime I’m missing Alice master new skills in gym (the classes run at the same time, in theory I could watch both from the gallery) and am both achingly proud and desperately sad when she tells me to stay with Giles so he isn’t sad or scared.
So am I over-reacting? Am I wrong to expect that a large(ish) community sports centre could communicate something so basic (and necessary) to their staff? As long as I’m there ‘it doesn’t matter’ – and as long as I renew our membership (again) next term they’ll be filling their classes and making money. Should I just be grateful that they can participate?
The Cheetahs had a fantastic time playing hide and seek in the long grass on the way home and I’m informed that the big Cheetahs have put the Cheetah Crisps (some salt & vinegar, some cheese & onion) on a very high shelf so that the little Cheetahs can’t reach them. They’re only allowed them as a treat if they’re very, very good…