A Glenrothes mother said her autistic son will not cope with school after being placed in mainstream education by Fife Council.
Worried Stephanie Ross had hoped son Struan would be given an education in a special support unit near her Glenrothes home.
However, she has been left devastated by the decision to allocate him a place in a mainstream school and has lodged an appeal.
Ms Ross, 31, believed a place in the town’s Rimbleton Primary School’s additional support class would be ideal for the youngster, who is severely autistic.
However, she was left shocked by the local authority’s decision to place him in the mainstream part instead.
He is due to start school in August, after the summer break.
Struan will have daily outreach sessions at the unit, as well as the help of a part time pupils support assistant with him.
But Ms Ross said said Struan would not be able to cope – and that those in the education service would soon recognise his struggle in a mainstream classroom.
The single mother explained that her four-year-old is non-verbal.
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Struan is also not toilet-trained and so has to wear a nappy. He also has learning support needs.
“He will be five in September but his mental age is about two to two-and-a-half – why would you put him in mainstream school?
“What is he going to be able to learn? I am sick with worry. I know he won’t cope.”
Ms Ross said it would be different if he had a full time pupil support assistant.
“It will only be a matter of time before they realise he needs to be in the unit full time.”
Not prepared to put him through the misery, she said she would refuse to send him to a mainstream school.
“Why should he suffer?” she said, adding it would also impact adversely on the youngsters’ classmates.
“I just feel they have given up on him before he has even started his education but I will never give up on him, I will fight for what’s best for Struan.”
Fife Council’s head of education and children’s services Peter McNaughton, said the appeal would be dealt with through the normal council process.
However, he added: “We are of the view that it is never in a child’s best interests to discuss such matters in a public forum.”
Mr McNaughton said: “Ms Ross’s appeal of this decision will be dealt with through established processes.
“We appreciate how important it is to parents to know as quickly as possible where their children will be attending school.”
He added that more generally, it was the policy of Fife Council to help children to be supported within mainstream education wherever possible, as research evidence and best practice in equality and inclusion suggested this was best for youngsters.