FURIOUS parents have slammed a school for punishing students if they shave their heads in support of a cancer charity.
It is understood at least one boy who shaved his head has already been put into isolation at Maplesden Noakes School until his hair grows back – with a petition started up to support other students wanting to raise money for charity.
The charity, Brave the Shave, is designed to show solidarity with those facing hair loss during cancer treatments – but according to the Maidstone school’s uniform policy, a shaved head is an “extreme hairstyle”.
Year 11 pupil Raif Valery is one student fundraising for the cause – but the school has reportedly told the curly-haired student to move the event from April 10 to the start of Easter holidays – or risk being put in isolation himself.
His incensed mum, Abigail Phillips, 46, a midwife at Darent Valley Hospital, said “I think it’s wrong to make an example of him when he’s trying to help a charity off his own initiative and the school should be supporting him.”
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Now running a petition to garner support for her son, she said: “It’s all above board, and he’s raising the money through the correct channels.
“He has long, curly hair so it is a big deal to him to shave it off and not something he’s doing for fashion.
“Even if he does move it to the Easter holidays, there’s no saying it will have grown back in time for when he has to go back to school.
“Missing class in the run up to his GCSEs could affect his grades.”
I think it’s wrong to make an example of him when he’s trying to help a charity off his own initiative and the school should be supporting him
The 15-year-old boy has so far raised £205 for the Brave the Shave charity.
She added: “These policies seem to be more about beating them into submission than anything else.”
A petition against the decision made by the 1,082-pupil co-educational secondary school in Kent has now been launched.
The school, on Buckland Road, said it was an “internal matter and it would not be appropriate to comment”.
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