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Old 02-07-2012, 07:03 AM
 
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son arrested......wasn't sure if he could go back to school....he's there.....i am wondering if anyone is aware of services schools can offer to make sure he graduates hs this year.....he needs to do his part.....he is experiencing shame, despair, at what he has done........He wants to move forward and put this mistake behind him........Thanks.
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Old 02-07-2012, 07:20 AM
 
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Best thing to do is contact the school. Setup a meeting with his guidance counselor/mentor or whatever the school calls it. Include an administrator if it seems necessary. Sit down with them, put it all out on the table and see what he needs to do to complete his HS education. Understand what's expected of him and work with them to make sure he follows through.
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Old 02-07-2012, 07:33 AM
 
16,525 posts, read 19,990,338 times
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I think that it would also be advisable to put his probation officer in touch with the guidance counselor and a school administrator. If your son knows that everyone is on the same page, hopefully he will stay focused on academics, rather than things like burglary and other things that will impede his progress, and will work hard enough to graduate on schedule.

Incidentally, I would suggest that you make every effort to get him involved in some type of extracurricular activities. Adolescents who are involved in extracurriculars have much less time for negative pursuits, and they tend to make friends with "the better element" in the school.

A curfew is also a very good idea. The less time that he has outside of the house at night = less time for getting into trouble.
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Old 02-07-2012, 10:02 AM
 
4,142 posts, read 9,634,650 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Retriever View Post
Incidentally, I would suggest that you make every effort to get him involved in some type of extracurricular activities. Adolescents who are involved in extracurriculars have much less time for negative pursuits, and they tend to make friends with "the better element" in the school.
I would assume he is a senior with only a few months of school to go.

Burglary is serious business and it seems like your son is going down the wrong path. I know you posted previously about drug testing your kid, and I am guessing a lot of the folks on here kind of assumed it was just some kid smoking pot. But if he got arrested for burglary, I would assume he is on some serious drugs, perhaps heroin. I would withhold all of his cash (if he has a job, allow him to work, but hold the checks and make him produce receipts for everything he purchases).

I would put him under complete lockdown and watch him like a hawk. To the extent of taking away his car keys, having the grandparents (or other trusted adult) over to watch him like a child every single day after school, and have him expected home by 3:30, NO EXCEPTIONS. Quite frankly, I wouldn't let him leave the house for anything but work and school.

I am not a hard ass, and I get that things happen. Getting into a fight, a DUI, drug possession, vandalism, etc I can understand. Things happen and it does not necessarily make you a bad person. But burglary is a deliberate act of malice against another. It is completely unacceptable and I would have absolutely no mercy on him. Thieves are complete scum. The lowest level of society. So you need to do what it takes to end this behavior and think long and hard before you ever trust your son again.
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Old 02-07-2012, 11:12 AM
 
5,617 posts, read 14,373,672 times
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many kids get arrested and return to school. It may be a different school , or the same school, or to a special detension center type school( usually for violent offenders) of course he is allowed to return to school to finish his education. Call the school and make arrangements to get him back into classes at the proper time or find out the school. ITS A MATTER OF WHEN HE CAN START NOT IF HE CAN START.
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Old 02-07-2012, 11:19 AM
 
5,617 posts, read 14,373,672 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NJGOAT View Post
Best thing to do is contact the school. Setup a meeting with his guidance counselor/mentor or whatever the school calls it. Include an administrator if it seems necessary. Sit down with them, put it all out on the table and see what he needs to do to complete his HS education. Understand what's expected of him and work with them to make sure he follows through.
you got it!!
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Old 02-07-2012, 11:21 AM
 
880 posts, read 1,062,334 times
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You didn't say whether he was convicted or just arrested. This will make the most difference. If the schools kicked out everyone who was arrested they would have 10% graduation rate.
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Old 02-07-2012, 11:33 AM
 
Location: Coastal New Jersey
68,312 posts, read 63,618,722 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NJGOAT View Post
Best thing to do is contact the school. Setup a meeting with his guidance counselor/mentor or whatever the school calls it. Include an administrator if it seems necessary. Sit down with them, put it all out on the table and see what he needs to do to complete his HS education. Understand what's expected of him and work with them to make sure he follows through.
And this is why NJ's very own Goat won that contest.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Retriever View Post
I think that it would also be advisable to put his probation officer in touch with the guidance counselor and a school administrator. If your son knows that everyone is on the same page, hopefully he will stay focused on academics, rather than things like burglary and other things that will impede his progress, and will work hard enough to graduate on schedule.

Incidentally, I would suggest that you make every effort to get him involved in some type of extracurricular activities. Adolescents who are involved in extracurriculars have much less time for negative pursuits, and they tend to make friends with "the better element" in the school.

A curfew is also a very good idea. The less time that he has outside of the house at night = less time for getting into trouble.
Excellent advice. I was on a jury for a well-known murder trial back in the 1990's when a group of suburban teenagers plotted and murdered another teenager. One thing that struck me was how often they were out until all hours of the night, sometimes overnight, and the parents either seemed to not care or thought their kids were elsewhere than where they were. Over the years since, I've noticed that when kids get involved in bad things, it's very often when they are out at night at hours when kids should not be out and on their own. Of course I'm not saying a kid can't get in trouble during daylight hours--I'm sure somebody's getting ready to point that out. But there is definitely a correlation between teenagers out at night hours and the amount of trouble they get into, IMO.

Good luck, OP. I hope this all works out for the best for you and your family.
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Old 02-07-2012, 05:24 PM
 
143 posts, read 279,017 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mightyqueen801 View Post
And this is why NJ's very own Goat won that contest.



Excellent advice. I was on a jury for a well-known murder trial back in the 1990's when a group of suburban teenagers plotted and murdered another teenager. One thing that struck me was how often they were out until all hours of the night, sometimes overnight, and the parents either seemed to not care or thought their kids were elsewhere than where they were. Over the years since, I've noticed that when kids get involved in bad things, it's very often when they are out at night at hours when kids should not be out and on their own. Of course I'm not saying a kid can't get in trouble during daylight hours--I'm sure somebody's getting ready to point that out. But there is definitely a correlation between teenagers out at night hours and the amount of trouble they get into, IMO.

Good luck, OP. I hope this all works out for the best for you and your family.
This is so true.

I remember in high school one of my teachers decided out of curiosity to ask us if any of us had curfews. All of the girls had curfews and none of the guys did. Granted, none of them were in any kind of trouble, it just wasn't that kind of town, but my teacher (a male) found it fascinating. Rather sexist, too.

Remember OP, it's not just what the schools can do, it's what you can do, too.
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Old 02-08-2012, 07:19 AM
 
367 posts, read 610,880 times
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First of all: I am so sorry you are going through this!

Does he have any sort of underlying condition? ADHD, Depression, mood disorder? Kids turn to drugs often in attempt to self medicate. If he has already been diagnosed with one of these disorders, you could ask the school to work with you via an IEP or a 504, depending on the diagnosis.

I don't know your financial situation, but I would start within the school system by asking for a meeting with the school social worker/psychologist to see if there is any testing/support they can give him immediately for the drug use/burglary. He may be 18, but he is in crisis.... Use that language. You won't be lying--he is definitely in crisis if he is depressed, anxious, and using drugs.

The fact he shows remorse, to me, demonstrates this is not a sociopath but rather a kid who acted without thought, and probably has low impulse control. Drugs, too, as you know can alter brain chemistry and bring on mental illness/disorders where none existed before. Coupled with the wrong friends, this can be a lethal combination.

So, once you are done reading this, call the school and ask for an in person meeting with the school psychologist and/or social worker. The social worker in particular will have a legal obligation to outline your options--particularly if you state he is using drugs and/or depressed and anxious. In other words, this is a kid in crisis and he needs support.

If you have the means, then I would look into hiring a child advocate to attend the meetings with you.

In term of home life, you need to walk a fine balance between demonstrating hope to your child (and even at 18, he's still a kid) and boundaries. It is impossible for me to teach you how to show your child respect and yet keep him safe in the best of circumstances, let alone NOW after he's lost your trust with drug use and crime. I get tough love, but I think it needs to be applied a certain way. Too often I have seen parents use the banner of tough love to just punish without instructing--and this makes things worse. These are kids who already feel hopeless and have low self esteem. They don't need to be told how awful they are; they need to be uplifted and they need to learn to do better. Now--I can see the collective eye rolling so just keep reading. I am no apologist--I believe in consequences..... see below.

Tough love is just that---it starts with the premise that you love your child and therefore you believe it is within your child to do better--something that must be communicated up front in a non emotional manner. You start adult to adult: "X, I believe in you. I believe you can do better than what's been happening lately. Your recent behavior is 100% unacceptable. You need to hear two things: 1) i believe in you and 2) because I believe in your, this behavior will no longer be tolerated. Ok--do you understand this last point?"

Make sure you are listening and make sure you have a bulleted lists of things you want to say. Stuff like: You will NO LONGER use drugs or make choices that land you in jail. I love you, son, but you need to understand that you are wading into territory that is going to haunt you for the rest of your life. Because I love you and I know who you are inside, I won't stand by and enable what's been going on around here. We need to talk about rules, consequences and triggers. I want to help you avoid the pitfalls that have gotten us here. You are going to be honest with me, or your therapist, or some other trusted adult about what it's going to take for you to right your ship." Something like that.

Whatever plan you build for him needs to include things he cannot do at all--ever. It must also include things to make him feel better about himself. He needs to contribute around the house, keep his grades up, get a job but also you and he need to come up with ways for him to relieve stress via an activity or sport.... stuff that gives him joy and takes him outside of his self. At the same time, he needs to be kept busy. I find that children who are "overscheduled" have less time to get into trouble. You need to address the issue of his friends and/or technology--and find ways for him to disconnect with whatever crowd he has gotten into. I really want to stress the benefits of a job.

There must be an understanding that infractions won't be tolerated. There must be open conversation about triggers and there must be professional support that you can reach out to if things escalate. Most of all--there must be follow through on your part on whatever rules you establish. There is a lot more at stake here than whether or not he graduates.

Burglary is absolutely serious business and even if he just lifted a watch off a table, this deceitful behavior coupled with propensity to break laws (stealing, drugs) is a bad path indeed. There is a fine line between troubled and doing bad.....your job as a parent is to work with him to see that..... I am hoping you are having professional help because you have a ton of stuff going on here--drug use, stealing, etc and the source is either the home situation and/or a mood/undiagnosed disorder. Both of those things will not improve dramatically without professional intervention. Again--start with the school, but if you can afford it, try to pay for a psychiatrist even if it is for a one time consult. If you have insurance, you may also qualify for mental health services so that's another avenue.

If I leave you withy anything solid, it is this: It is February and he will be graduating (hopefully) in June. You have a very small window where you can get support via the school. Whatever issues he is experiencing now will only escalate when he is unmoored from school.

I will send positive thoughts and prayers your way,

CG

Last edited by CanonGrace; 02-08-2012 at 07:41 AM..
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