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I have two kids who are turning 11. Both kids skipped kindergarten. So they're starting 7th grade. I was totally lost last year but I want to do better this coming school year. My daughter has picked up some bad habits last year. She got suspended (in school and out of school) a ton of times (7-8 times every quarter[except the 1st quarter where she was perfect]), got many detentions (half of which she ditched), and her grades started dropping. She's been a straight A student all her life. She was perfect first quarter. Then at the second quarter, she just started to fall and turn into a.. bad person. I've had multipul confrences with her teachers, guidance councler, her grade principal, and the school principal. We gave her an IQ test and it was higher then it ever was. We've found nothing wrong with her. I'm quite concerned but I'm lost on what to do. Should I let her slide? Should I punish her? I l haven't punished her before because she's been so good. I didn't punish her last year at all because I was lost. Should I punish her? If anyone has any suggestions, please let me know!
 

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Have you talked to her about it? It sounds so abrupt - maybe something happened to trigger the bad behavior. Some traumatic (to her) event could have happened at school to trigger this.<br><br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug">
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>New_Natural_Mom</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/11612277"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Have you talked to her about it? It sounds so abrupt - maybe something happened to trigger the bad behavior. Some traumatic (to her) event could have happened at school to trigger this.<br><br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"></div>
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This is my first thought. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"> to you and your dd<br><br>
Oh, and no, punishing her probably would just make things worse right now. You need to figure out the cause for the behavior. It's just a symptom of something else.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>kathymuggle</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/11612127"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">It doesn't sound like the school she is in is working for her....</div>
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Perhaps she is bored and needs to be challenged more. When I was bored in school I caused alot of trouble. I know even my 3yo causes trouble when we don't keep her challenged in some way. Good luck getting to the bottom of this.<br><br>
Beth
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>kathymuggle</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/11612127"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">It doesn't sound like the school she is in is working for her....<br><br>
Kathy</div>
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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/yeahthat.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="yeah that">:<br><br>
My DS 2 just finished 8th grade and had a ton of referrals. He never actually made his way to ISS because the principals knew that we were dealing with a kiddo that has severe social issues and who WANTED to be suspended, so they were kind enough to at least not do that.<br>
He passed by the thinnest skin on his teeth and we are now going to do cyberschooling for him for high school, or at least give it a try and see how it goes. Public schools can be really tough because they very much adapt to a one size fits all unless you have an IEP, which it sounds like you don't/ The problem with ISS and especially OSS, is that it rewards the kids. Chances are they don't want to be in school and in class anyways. So all they have to do is act out enough to get removed and sent to ISS. It may be boring but it's better than having to go to class and be bored there too and have to work on top of it. OSS is that much better, you don't have to deal with school at all. So can you see why your DD might just be prompted to continue on with the poor choice making?<br>
Start investigating educational options, both in and out of your district and see what you come up with. Your DD might respond better to a nontraditional school setting.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>jellybellyxoxo</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/11611868"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I have two kids who are turning 11. Both kids skipped kindergarten. So they're starting 7th grade. I was totally lost last year but I want to do better this coming school year. My daughter has picked up some bad habits last year. She got suspended (in school and out of school) a ton of times (7-8 times every quarter[except the 1st quarter where she was perfect]), got many detentions (half of which she ditched), and her grades started dropping. She's been a straight A student all her life. She was perfect first quarter. Then at the second quarter, she just started to fall and turn into a.. bad person. I've had multipul confrences with her teachers, guidance councler, her grade principal, and the school principal. We gave her an IQ test and it was higher then it ever was. We've found nothing wrong with her. I'm quite concerned but I'm lost on what to do. Should I let her slide? Should I punish her? I l haven't punished her before because she's been so good. I didn't punish her last year at all because I was lost. Should I punish her? If anyone has any suggestions, please let me know!</div>
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First question: What <i>happened</i>? That's such a huge change in behavior. When kids act like this, it's often not because there's something wrong with them, but because something happened to them, because there is a major new stress in their lives, or because they are coping with pain, pressure, or stress. Did the guidance councilor and principal have any suggestions, perhaps a referral to a psychologist or social worker? Does she have many friends? How has she been with them lately? What do you mean by "I was lost"?<br><br>
I think you have to get to the bottom of whatever's going on, because it seems like there is something, and something rather large, going on.
 

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When I was in 6th grade I started flunking after always being the top student in the class...then I refused to go to 7th and 8th grades and went on to high school and did really well. I don't want to scare you, but my trigger was that I was raped by a relative. I shudder to think instead of trying to respond to my needs (changing my school situation when I needed it, even though I was not ready to talk about what happened) what would have happened if my parents had punished me instead. Her situation is hopefully NOT the same as mine, but you need to start puzzling out the reason for the change.
 

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Also bad grades and bad behavior do not equal bad person.<br><br>
Is it possible she is just bored, bored, bored? Maybe she needs a more challenging school.
 

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I don't like the word <i>punish</i> - I like using <i>consequences</i> myself. Punishing has such a negative connotation. Consequences are neutral - they can be good or bad.<br><br>
I agree that there's something else going on. Good luck trying to find out what - you may never know. If you're lucky you will though. My oldest started flunking in grade 6 because he was put into academic challenge and suddenly had to actually work for his grades, and didn't feel like it. He never really recovered. If you can find out whether it's the school itself or something else, that's a start, and you can go from there deciding whether another school would be best, and if so what type, or whether she could home/un/cyber school. If it's something besides school, hopefully it will be something that you can address and solve with her.
 

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What does this mean? "I was lost." I am confused about this.<br><br>
As far as your DD, I think maybe you need to talk about what happened, about why she changed so abruptly. People don't usually change abruptly without some sort of trigger. I hate to be negative, but like a PP, my immediate thought was that something of a sexual molestation issue occurred. Hopefully, that was not the case.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>gardenmommy</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/11624670"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">What does this mean? "I was lost." I am confused about this.</div>
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Me too. Was there a major change in your family? Death, finances, marital stress, depression?<br>
DH lost both his folks in 1 year and went into a major depression that affected us all. There are HUGE unresolved issues with DH's relationships with his folks and he's been playing them out with all of us. It's been hell.<br>
DD and DS both had a rough school year this past year.<br>
DD's behavior was particularly a dramatic change. That was a huge red flag for me.<br>
Look deeper.
 

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I had a year like that in 8th grade.<br><br>
Being punished did not help me AT ALL. I was acting out because I was miserable, for many reasons. What might have helped would have been if my parents had reached out to me, talked to me, let me take some time out when I needed it, let me know they still loved me no matter what I did, told me that I would be OK even if it didn't seem like it at the time. Punishment, yelling, lectures, etc. just deepened the wedge between us that remains there to this day. I turned out OK, but it was despite their parenting, not because of it.
 

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Have you talked to your dd about what she thinks is causing the problem? Asked her for possible solutions?
 

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I think I would try to find out what might have happened.<br><br>
Maybe one of the other kids knows? Ask your oldest daughter or her twin, they might have an idea of what's really bothering her.<br><br>
Also, the youngest kid in a group often follows the kids that you'd rather she not be friends with. Maybe in an attempt to be in a "group" she fell into the wrong group. I did that for a short time my freshman year in high school. But, I made changes my sophomore year. (I had to consiously decide to reinvent myself)<br><br>
If you can honestly be sure that nothing has happened, and it isn't a bad group of friends, then maybe a different school setting would work for her.<br><br>
In my area, there aren't many other options, so if I needed to make a change for my dd, I would have to home school her or find some kind of online school. But, perhaps in your area, you would have other schools to choose from???
 

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Also, I don't think a punishment would do much good.<br><br>
That doesn't mean you should be hands off. No punishment doesn't mean "it's O.K that you do these things". She might see that as you don't really care, or you are too busy.<br><br>
I would come up with a consequense that you both agree on if she is suspended, or expelled. That way, she knows what to expect, and you should follow through with it.
 

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I just wanted to say PLEASE don't punish her... I did the exact same thing when I was that age and when I was punished it made it much worse... Now I'm sure that you have a better relationship with your dd than I had with my mother since i did not live with her when I was younger and kinda resented that, but keep in mind that a lot happens at that age that might be hard for her to talk to MOM about even in the best kind of relationships... thats actually why I'm working towards my psych phd... I want to help as many kids who experience this as possible... its really scarey what kids are expected to go through these days... and I really dont think parents are equipped to handle many of the situations, not from lack of trying... its just so different... having said that if you ever want to talk about any of this I'm available... or even if you want someone to explain to your dd how this type of thing could affect her and that she can fix everything again (I always thought I had screwed up and was stuck that way) ... I do recomend finding someone who isn't you that she can talk to... not neccesarily a therapist or anything, maybe just a "cool" friend of yours or a older teen who you trust... you can sit down with them and expalin that your dd can tell teh friend anything and unless it is life threatening she wont tell you what it is... but you have to make sure the friend knows how to respond to certain situations too... I actually helped a friend out with her son like this and thankfully it worked well... sorry to write a book this is just something I feel incredibly passionately about....
 

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It is not uncommon for very intelligent children to do poorly in a traditional school; most of the time, they are not adequately challenged and they tend to catch on faster than most that the whole system is not really about them "learning" but about them being controlled. If you can get her into a better learning environment, this would probably help.<br><br>
Good luck!
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Kathryn B</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/11673900"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">the whole system is not really about them "learning" but about them being controlled.</div>
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Isn't THAT the truth. That's why I did so poorly in high school (almost didn't graduate) but did great in college.
 

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I agree that something must have happened. Do not punish her. What if she experienced some sort of trauma that she is hiding from you, and it is coming out in her behavior? You'd feel terrible if you punished her.<br><br>
What specific behaviors are getting her suspended?<br><br>
What does she say about the problem?<br><br>
Have you tried to find out if she has any ideas about what steps to take next? Is she interested in looking into other schools? She is much more likely to cooperate with a plan that she has helped to make.
 
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