Get him on an IEP, get him "504'ed". That will protect him from being kicked out, and, will get him an aide. This might not work in private or charter schools, each state is different. But for public schools, he'd be protected by Americans with Disabilities act.
Getting him 504'ed is easy: just tell the school he has a social problem, and - voila! - he's protected under ADA. The school will then be forced to qualify him, and set up a process to help him - that's what the IEP is for.
If you are unsure about this, talk with your pediatrician. You can also talk to his school, they are familiar with the process, and they do it all the time.
Take a look here:
Americans with Disabilities Act
Also, I don't know what state (or country) you're in; in the US, each state has a constitution which covers students with disabilities, and also has resources to assist with people in your situation.
So, as I reside in New Jersey, I had several resources:
- Office of Licensing - they ensure schools comply with ADA
- Office of Civil Affairs - they ensure schools do not violate student's rights
- Child Protection Services (formerly, Division of Youth and Family Services)
One thing that helped me big-time was PerformCare, a division of Child Protection Services consisting of therapists and counselors that were contracted through CPS/DYFS (yes, the same department famous(?) for taking kids away from bad parents; that's not all that they do: they can help you here). I liked PerformCare, because the therapists came to your home to do the counseling. This is roughly how the process worked:
Call Child Protection Services, tell them you need counseling services for your child
They will create a case number for you (as well as interview you). They will generally guide you through the rest of the process, but I'll spell out what we did for posterity
Take that case number you got from CPS/DYFS, call PerformCare (or the equivalant for your state), and give them the case number
You will answer a series of questions, about 10 minutes
After that, they will schedule a more in-depth interview for you, your child, and maybe your family members
An agent from DYFS and PerformCare will arrive at your home (don't be alarmed, this is expected)
You will go through a rigorous 4-hour interview, focusing on what you've tried, what is happening, what the schools are doing; they'll ask about history, your upbringing - everything. Answer candidly!
After that interview, they leave, and separately review that interview
They will make recommendations about what kind of services they can provide. For example, my son needed anger management help, body control help, and sensory interruptions for his ADHD. They recommended 3 therapists for anger management; 3 therapists for ADHD; and 3 therapists for dealing with sensory issues. We chose one from each category, based on those therapists timeframes. Cost is paid for by the state!
Therapists came to the home - three per week, one for each issue - for one hour each. This is called "intensive psychological help", and lasts for 3-4 weeks. After that, it calms down, and visits focus on treatment, remedies, and resources for both the child and the family.
After about 4 months, if you feel you need more counseling, you can petition CPS/DYFS to give you more time, but you only get one extension. Some states might give you more time, others might not give you an extension. Others might give you 6 months, others might not have a limit.
In the meantime, you'll hopefully get a diagnosis of his condition, and so, you'll have resources to help you and your child cope with whatever affliction he's diagnosed with.
During all of this, work with your son's teachers, aides, and guidance counselors. Sign all agreements allowing them all to speak to each other; if you don't you become the bottle neck, and communication is slowed. Best to let them do the communicating, but, you have to sign documents to let them do that.
Also during all this, CPS/DYFS will periodically visit you. Not so much to keep an eye on you, but they're paying the bills, so they want to be sure the therapists are showing up and that you feel they're doing a good job. Any hint that someone's not doing their job, they should try to fix it in some way.
In the meantime, I understand when you say he's "bad" - I've been there. But it is better to say "he's misbehaving", or, "he could improve his behavior" - it's less negative. I'm not into PC terms, but he'll live up to these things, so, focus more on the positive and ignore the negative where possible. Don't say he's "bad".
Also, set up a structure of discipline - and be consistent and FOLLOW THROUGH. Your counselors can guide you through all this, but it doesn't hurt to restate it. You mentioned spanking. That's a hot-button topic in all states. You are allowed to spank your child in most states child even where it's explicitly banned - you just can't leave a mark - and red spots are marks. However, while you are under the care of CPS/DYFS, you will need to abandon any corporal punishments. Timeouts, taking away activities - these are all what CPS/DYFS will steer you to. It's okay to tell them you spank your child, too. (They'll ask your son anyway, expect him to give honest answers. So don't lie.)
You will also need to coordinate with his father - who will also undergo an interview with CPS/PerformCare, and even counselors. If he refuses, that's an issue for the state to deal with, he'll eventually have to - and even be forced to through the courts. Otherwise, the state can refuse to help you (unless there's allegations of abuse, but you didn't hint that was an issue here).
One more thing: Everyone focuses on the kids. It's always about the kids. The kids get child care reimbursement, free/reduced lunches, use of parks. There's always some toy or clothing drive to help kids.
But the adults get nothing.
You need to make it unequivocally clear to CPS/DYFS, and your son's therapists, that YOU need resources too: books, seminars, workshops, data sheets - everything. You're going to raise him the rest of his life, they leave after 6 months. He's nothing but a case number to them. So take advantage of the system and the therapists who are there, and get tips on dealing with his behavior, as well as tips on working with "the system".
I promise: this is an uphill battle, and he will continually be threatened with expulsion. But if you show that you are working to help him, and work with the school system, they can be very compassionate. So arm yourself with knowledge and resources - as much as you can get. Learn how to talk to people in the system, learn the ins and outs of navigating a system designed to protect themselves.
YOU are his ONLY advocate! Be his hero.