I do my best to always follow through with consequences for my son. He is now 5 years old and normally very well behaved. He started hitting his friends at kindergarten three weeks ago. The first time he came home with a note from the school. He had scooted across a hallway to hit a girl because he overheard her saying something that made him angry. I told him how upset I was and how hitting was not allowed ever. I talked about how he should walk away or tell a teacher instead of hitting and had him repeat back to me those two options. He had an early dinner and sent to bed very early - missing out on his dessert and bedtime story. The next morning we practiced saying what to do instead of hitting all the way to the bus.
He came home with another note for hitting that day. He had hit a little boy at recess because he said he wasn't his friend anymore. I took some advice from my mum and didn't punish him that night. I told him how disappointed I was and that I loved him and knew he was a very good boy who doesn't hit people. I told him that we would start fresh again tomorrow. Again we practiced what to do instead of hitting when he got really angry with someone.
The following day he and another boy pushed down and hit a boy who was new to the school when they saw him at recess. OMG???? I was extremely upset. He lost his privileges again that night and listened to a very long lecture. I told him that if I couldn't trust him not to hit people at school then he wouldn't be sent back (he loves going). I drove him in the next morning and talked to his teacher. She said she was also taking away his favorite activities for these incidents as soon as they happened. I had him apologize to the little boy and then took him home to spend a very boring day, mostly in his room. I also told him that if he ever hit anybody again he would lose school entirely and not see his friends or teachers again.
The following day was okay and then we had the weekend.
He hit not one, but two kids on two separate occasions on monday. I kept him home for the rest of the week. I told him that this was to show him how awful it would be not to go to school anymore and that if he hit again he would NEVER go back. I reminded him of the special activities he was missing out on throughout the week. I did my best to make sure he was very bored at home. I said no to pretty much anything he asked for and reminded him about the hitting. I got books on bullying from the library and read and discussed them with him.
The next monday (this week) he came home with a special note from the teacher saying how good he'd been all day. I high-fived him and got really excited. We celebrated with his favorite dinner out (hotdog and fries)... he had a great dessert when we got home and lovely bedtime stories.
Tuesday he hit someone again. I took him in to see the teacher wed morning and she doesn't know what to do or suggest. I really wish I hadn't threatened to never allow him back to school if he kept hitting. I now feel that I can't let him go back. There are 3 1/2 months left to school... and it just isn't any school. It's a french school that I worked really hard to get him accepted into. We don't speak french at home and he has really been doing well with the language at school. He is pretty much fluent already and is talking to his baby sister in french and singing french songs.
Is there anyway to get myself out of this mess I've created? I really want him back in school. This is friday and his 3rd day home this week. He seems to miss it. I've told him about the special events at school that he's missing out on this week. I thought I might keep him out for another week or maybe make it two this time and then send him back (as if that's what I had mean't all along) but he asked me, with lots of tears, if he really wasn't ever going back like I had said... and I had to agree... that is exactly what I had threatened. Lots of begging and crying on his part made it more and more concrete that he wasn't allowed back.
What should I do? Keep him home for the remainder of the school year and try again fresh in Sept? Or is there anyway I can send him back to school soon without teaching him that I don't follow through on the big consequences?