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To Sam

Annoyance, anger and upsetness

Hi Sam, I am a 9 year old boy. I live with my parents, 2 older brothers who are 13 and 12. A younger brother aged 8 and a only sister of 4. At the age of 7, I was diagnosed with Asperger's. I do not want to go to a special needs secondary school in the future as it will look in my view, annoying and strange on a future CV. I feel angry that I and other special needed children don't have a say in their future. The thing that makes me upset is I would never be able to pursue a childhood dream of mine and become a architect but I am always worried that the asperger's will interfere with my ambition. My question is can I have a say in my future? Because my school's senco is a rude interference saying I can NOT have a say in my future when I want to say it's my life and not hers.

Ask Sam


Hi there,

All children and young people have the right to have a say in their future. The Government has written rules for schools telling them that they have to listen to young people’s views. This means that your teachers have to involve you when they make decisions about you. At the same time, your parents have something called “Parental responsibility”, which means that they usually get the final say about which school you go to.

It’s great that you have an ambition to be an architect, it’s clearly very important to you. You deserve to have the right support so that you can achieve your potential. Having Asperger’s can mean that people have challenges in life, but people with Asperger’s can achieve their dreams with the right help.

You said that you’re worried about going to a special needs secondary school because of how it might look on your CV. It wouldn’t be okay for somebody to judge you because of the school you go to. If you’d like to talk about these feelings and worries some more, remember that you can talk to a Childline Counsellor any time.

It’s a good idea to talk to your parents or carers how you feel so that they understand what you hope to do in the future. It might also help to explain to them what subjects you’d like to study so that they can check which schools offer the right subjects for your career.

I’m concerned that the SENCO at school is being rude to you. All staff at school have a responsibility to listen and treat you with respect. There are rules made by the Government to make sure that professionals work with people with special educational needs in the right way. These rules are called “SEND Code of Practice”. Maybe you and your parents could have a look at them together if you’re worried about how your SENCO is behaving.

You explained that you’re angry that other children with special needs don’t have a say in their future. If you’d like to connect with other young people and find out what they think about this, you could think about starting a new thread about it on the “Campaigning” section of Childline’s message boards. You can also look at Mencap’s webpage about Children’s Education Rights. Remember that there are laws to protect people from being treated badly because of a disability.

I’m sure that there will be other young people in similar situations reading this. You writing in will help them too, so thank you for your letter.

I hope that you get the support you need.

Take care,


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