Police were forced to intervene as parents protested outside a school after 50 children were sent home for wearing the wrong socks and cardigans.
Yep, you read that right!
Students were told they could not enter Hartsdown Academy in Margate, Kent for wearing the wrong uniform – even though parents followed the rules sent to them by letter.
One girl was left with bleeding feet after being forced to remove her socks because they were ‘the wrong colour’, while another was turned away for wearing trainers to prevent hip pain after a car accident.
Now that is not acceptable!
William King, a Year 7 student, was hit by a car last year and despite mum Sharon’s protests and explanation, headmaster Matthew Tate refused to let William wear trainers.
Matthew told Sharon he “was happy” for William to be in pain all day if he changed out of the trainers.
Sharon told The Sun: “I’ve got a daughter in Year 11 with hypermobility who has worn Nike Air Max for the past three years and has never had a problem, so I just assumed it would be the same for William.
“As soon as we arrived at the gates William was stopped along with many other Year 7’s because they were going in an hour early before the other pupils.
“He was singled out and told he needed to change his footwear, I tried to explain it was on medical grounds but the headmaster was having none of it.”
Sharon has filed a complaint with Ofsted, but is worried the experience has ruined William’s first day at a new school.
She also claimed 50 children being sent home was not accurate, saying it was more like “half the school”.
She said: “There were around 200 students outside the school at its peak, and all through town you could see kids in Hartsdown uniforms.”
One furious mum, Latasha Whiting, told The Mirror that kids were in the road, with cars beeping and swerving.
She added that her own daughter was sent home for having a ‘short’ skirt, she also explained how a young girl knocked on her husband’s window asking for a lift home.
She said: “It was ridiculous. There were kids in the road, cars beeping and swerving.
“They [staff] didn’t let them into the school to make calls.
“A 12-year-old girl knocked on my husband’s window and asked him to take her home because she couldn’t get in touch with her parents.
“She didn’t even know him. He told her to go and ask a teacher but she said she had and she’d been dismissed.”
Another outraged mum explained how her daughter Kim, 13, was told her cardigan was wrong as she tried to enter the school – despite the fact she bought it from the school store.
She had left her blazer at school over the six week break, but was not even allowed to go in and retrieve it.
Mum Allison said: “She’s 13 and was left on the pavement until I could get a taxi to collect her!”
She was also told that Kim’s shoes were not appropriate, as the school said the dark colour lace up brogues were trainers.
Lucy Wood was forced to remove her white socks as they were the ‘wrong colour’.
As she walked around all day with a new pair of shoes on, her feet were rubbed raw and cut until they bled.
Her mum Samantha Wood said she had “no idea” white socks were not allowed, she bought them at the school store and was not told they weren’t allowed.
She said: “Lucy was in tears due to the headmaster making her take off her socks.
“The shoes ripped open the backs of her feet. There was blood everywhere.”
She added: “He was sending tons of kids home, I’ve never seen anything like it.
“[The school] is a load of crap and I’m moving her after what I saw this morning.”
So what did headmaster Mr Tate have to say?
He appeared on ITV’s Good Morning Britain to defend his decision, he said: “This is about setting the standards for this school.
“This school for a long time has been a school that many people have been ashamed of and that people haven’t wanted to go to.
“We set out yesterday that actually this is a school that is going places.
“This school is going to be an amazing place for children to have a great education and actually we are going to create a school where children are proud to be here and that the community is proud of.
“This is the first step to doing that.”
Do you think he made the right decision? Tell us what you think!