My son J has always struggled in all aspects of school from the day he started. 

He was diagnosed with autism and learning difficulties, he also has a hearing impairment which impacts on his speech. We made it through primary school (just). 

Then came the move to secondary school. J was actually excited and Year 7 went amazingly, in fact he settled into the routines very quickly which was great and pleasantly surprising. 

Year 8 was a different story. I guess his peers grew up more than he did over the summer, that and the hormones had started kicking in. My son has been picked on since September by various members of his year group and even physically assaulted. Every time I went to the school (which is often, what with J forgetting something, or my other son T and his orthodontist appointments) I asked for a meeting to discuss what has been going on over and over again.

When J was physically assaulted by another child on the way home from school my first reaction was to approach the school, but I phoned the police because I knew the school wouldn't do anything. The police did; they listened, the other child was spoken to, and his parents and the school (I suppose they had to be seen to be doing something) put the child in "inclusion". 

In the middle of December my son walked out of school at lunchtime. Finally I got a meeting where the school said that he was being bullied. It was very hard to actually hear this.

So we all came up with a plan to do a secret diary, where J can jot down the facts about things that have happened. During the last week before Christmas, J was so excited as they were doing a Secret Santa in his tutor group. He bought something for his classmate, wrapped it up and took it in. But then at the swap, whilst everyone else was happy and excited unwrapping his or her Secret Santa gift, J was left heartbroken and upset - crying in fact - that his person didn't get him anything at all. He came home at the end of the day and sobbed his heart out, saying nobody liked him and that's why he didn't get anything.

I have of course explained to him that some people can't afford extra things at this time of year and that's most likely the reason. But if I am honest - a one pound bag of Haribo would have been better than to crush someone who already is bullied. Or maybe the tutor who had arranged this Secret Santa (my other son's tutor group doesn’t do a Secret Santa, so it isn’t school wide) should have had a couple of gifts for those who didn't get something - what do you think? Do you think it would be fair of me to ask that Secret Santa be stopped for next year?

My son is distraught because of this and I wanted to buy something and take it in to be given to him but I felt the damage had already been done. 

Perhaps I'm over reacting or am I right? 

This is Kerry-Anne's first blog as a Family Fund Blogger