The mum of an autistic girl says her daughter may never return to school after she was allegedly beaten unconscious after being lured to a park .
Young Abbie Jarvis hit the headlines last month when shocking images of her bloodied face showed the extent of her injuries.
The now 13-year-old reportedly suffered multiple kicks to the head and was left covered in blood, while other teenagers filmed the attack on their phones.
She was scooped up by her mum Angela who feared she may have been brain damaged as her daughter was slipping in and out of consciousness and mumbling on her way to hospital.
Doctors rushed Angela into a side room and warned her they were investigating whether her daughter had suffered a fractured skull.
A month on, the youngster from Glasgow has not been back to school and her mum says the family is now considering home schooling both Abbie and her 15-year-old brother Ethan, who has Asperger’s Syndrome.
Angela, 43, told the Mirror: “We aren’t sure if she’ll be returning to school, she is very anxious and scared.
“I wanted to return to work, but I need to keep her safe.
“Her whole life has completely changed. Even walking to the shops she was grabbing my arm and said ‘mum, don’t leave my side’.
“I’m like her bodyguard now, to keep her feeling safe.”
Angela added that Abbie had thought she was meeting a friend in the park and now she simply doesn’t trust anyone.
She said: “She has major trust issues and says everything doesn’t feel real. She can’t understand why she was attacked.
“I’m confused about why it all happened as well.”
Angela said it was her worst nightmare when she saw Abbie covered in blood on the day she was attacked.
“I can’t describe the feeling, I nearly vomited and had to drive her to hospital.
“I was just in survival mode, she was mumbling and I just kept hoping that she’d get through this, I thought she might have brain damage.”
Angela added that Abbie had struggled with her autism before the attack, but with the help of CAMHS – the Child Mental Health Service – she had built up her confidence and was finally in school and making friends.
“It will be Abbie’s decision if she is home-schooled, she would like to go to school as she enjoys being with her friends, but she is scared, so I’m leaving the decision to her,” Angela added.
National Autistic Society Scotland’s external affairs manager Suzi Martin said: “This is a big problem for autistic young people across Scotland. This is not an isolated case.
“We regularly hear from families of autistic young people who are not in school or education for a variety of reasons including negative experiences with other pupils, such as bullying.
“There is simply not enough support for autistic young people in schools and we are urging the Scottish Government to focus on this issue, as well as campaigning for a Commissioner that can protect and promote the rights of autistic people.”
Ms Martin added that autistic young people can have one or more sensory differences so can feel overwhelmed by noise, smells, lights and find open spaces such as school canteens or sports fields hard places to be.
“This can lead to stress and anxiety for an autistic child or young person and their behaviour can then be seen as challenging, which can result in children being excluded,” she said.
“They may be seen as acting up but they are trying to communicate their distress or self-regulate to keep their anxiety and stress under control.”
The National Autistic Society Scotland, alongside Scottish Autism and Children in Scotland has campaigned to stop autistic learners being excluded from education.
The Not Included, Not Engaged, Not Involved campaign found that 71% of those who took part said that their child had missed school for reasons other than common childhood illness in the last two years.
And 85% did not receive support to catch up on work they had missed, regardless of the type of absence.
A Police Scotland spokeswoman told the Mirror: “A 13-year-old girl has been arrested and charged following the alleged serious assault of a 12-year-old girl in Southdeen Avenue near Southdeen Park, Drumchapel, Glasgow, on Tuesday, October 4.
“She has been released on an Undertaking to appear at Glasgow Sheriff Court at a later date.
“A report will be submitted to the Procurator Fiscal and the Scottish Children’s Reporters Administration for consideration.”