Mum slams school for 'pettiness' after daughters sent home for wearing wrong shoes
A single mum has hit out at a secondary school for sending her daughters home on the first day of term for wearing the wrong shoes.
The woman, who wished to remain anonymous, splashed out on two pairs of shoes for the start of the new school year.
But the school said they didn't comply with the uniform policy and classified them as "boots", reported BerkshireLive.
Now the mum said she will only be able to afford to replace the shoes next month.
"I'm a single parent. I'm self-employed and I don't earn a lot of money. The shoes I bought my girls cost a fair bit," she said.
"The school skirt alone cost £25 but if I'd gone to Tesco's I could've bought one for £10."
The girls have since been allowed to return to the classroom, but on the understanding that the shoes are replaced by October 30, but the mum said she "can't promise that I'll be able to pay for them."
She said: "My girls were so looking forward to going back to school as they've missed so much of it because of the pandemic.
"If my washing machine breaks down in that time I'm going to pay to fix that, not buy new shoes.
"I just don't understand the pettiness of how the schools are dealing with the fact that parents haven't got any money.
"We are doing our best to keep them looking clean, smart, and respectable yet they are punishing and penalising our kids."
The mum said she "bumped into 20 students" walking through a local park that she claims had also been sent home.
"Me and the school disagree on what their shoes are classed as but they were sold as a school shoe," she said.
The school's deputy head teacher, Mary Morris, said: "If you have a school uniform, it's reasonable to expect students to wear it.
"We did a full consultation with parents in March and every parent was invited to give their comment.
"As a result of that, we instituted blazers and we recognised the cost of that for parents so the trust funded a blazer for every single student.
"We then finalised our uniform policy and sent it out to parents in April and sent out several reminders. We were very clear about what the uniform requirements were.
"We've just got a very small number of students who for whatever reason have not followed the uniform policy. We wrote to all families last week to send them the uniform policy again.
"We really did everything we could to make it crystal clear what our expectations were."
Ms Morris mentioned that only a small number of students were sent home because of their uniform and that the rest looked "incredibly smart".
The school's uniform policy states that "brown shoes, trainers, Ugg boots, boots and canvas shoes" are not acceptable and that "pupils who do not comply with the uniform code will be challenged by staff".