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100 pupils sent home for having wrong shoes

Sandwell | News | Published:

One hundred pupils were sent home on their first day back at school for wearing the wrong shoes.

Parents outside the gates of The Coseley School yesterday told of their anger and frustration at the move, as dozens of children had to wait to be collected.

They say they were not made aware of a new policy stating children had to wear black, leather shoes until they received a text message the night before, although the school insists it told people twice last term.

Have your children been sent home from school or been in trouble in a uniform crackdown? Leave your comments below.

Parents were also angry that they received a text from the school at just before 10am to inform them their children had been sent home, with many having to change plans or leave work to pick up pupils.

Karen Glear, from Rainbow Street, Coseley, received a text at 9.51am while she was in the doctor's surgery after her daughter Caitlin, 14, was sent home for wearing black canvas trainers.

She said: "My daughter made her own way home, but there were children walking around the street. That's what really gets me."

Another parent, 30-year-old Stephanie Kirby, from Tipton, said she received no text message but happened to be in Coseley when she saw children walking around outside.

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She was outside the school, but did not know where her 13-year-old son Levi was, and had no way to contact him.

She said: "I was in Coseley at Subway and I saw lots of kids. I asked them what they were doing and they said they had been sent home.

"He doesn't have a phone on him and I don't know where he is. He has to have medication and I didn't know if he'd had it.

"I've told them I'm going to put in a complaint."

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School children be made to wear school uniform? Is it more trouble than it is worth? Leave your comments below.

Another couple, John and Lucy Morris, were picking up their friends' children as well as their daughter Chloe, 12, as their friends were at work.

But the school insists it made thorough checks before sending any pupils home, and where parents asked for children to be kept in school teachers did so.

The text received by parents yesterday morning reads: "Dear Parent/Guardian. Our uniform policy clearly states that black leather shoes need to be worn. Your child is in inappropriate footwear today, therefore we are sending them home.

"Please can you arrange for correct footwear to be worn before they return."

It was signed off by headteacher Kirsty Westhead-Jones.

Other parents outside the school gates yesterday said the first they knew about the new policy on shoes was from another text, sent to them the night before.

Emma and David Guthrie, from the Rainbow estate in Coseley, bought a £20 pair of black trainers for their son Lewis, 12, from Sports Direct a week before the start of term.

Mrs Guthrie, 35, was at home when she was told Lewis had not been allowed into school.

She said: "We had a text about the shoes on Monday, but it's no good telling us the day before.

"I think it's disgraceful. They are black formal shoes that he's got now, and what have they got to do with him looking at a black board, reading and writing?

"I'm not going out and buying any more, I'm putting my foot down and he's wearing them. Why should I pay out again when there's nothing wrong with his current pair?

"If they reimburse us then fair enough."

But the school has said it has told parents and pupils on a number of previous occasions.

Mrs Westhead-Jones said: "We have improved our uniform by asking parents not to send their children in trainers, which we hope will bring a sense of pride amongst students and reflect the very high educational standards we have in school.

"We informed parents by letter twice last term, as well as sharing the proposals with pupils during assembly. We also reminded parents via text this week about the new arrangements and thankfully the vast majority share our enthusiasm for the very best school environment and standards of learning.

"Unfortunately, around 100 pupils attended school without the correct footwear and we contacted their parents before sending the children home to change.

"I have offered to meet all parents individually to discuss the new arrangements with them."

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