Schoolboy ‘kept in isolation’ over short haircut

James Chickerema.
James Chickerema.
Have your say

A FURIOUS mum says her son has been in isolation for almost two weeks because of his haircut.

James Chickerema 12, a pupil at St Robert of Newminster RC School in Washington, was separated from his classmates last Monday when the school said his haircut wasn’t acceptable.

However, mum Mandy, said her son’s hair is always kept very short in a bid to keep his eczema under control.

And, the Year 7 youngster, who joined the secondary school in September, has been in tears over the situation.

Single mum Mandy said: “He came home from school saying his haircut wasn’t acceptable because you could see a line in it, so I cut it and evened it out myself so you couldn’t see the line.”

She said she thought that would be the end of it, but the following afternoon James came home from school saying he was still in isolation because the school said his haircut was too short and broke the rules.

Mandy, who lives in Barmston’s Horsley Road, said she has been to the school a number of times to explain about James’ medical condition, including needing to use medicated shampoos and creams, but staff say he will not be allowed back into the normal classroom activities until it grows.

She said: “I just can’t understand it, because it is his normal haircut. He has eczema and it is much easier to keep it short. I don’t see the problem because it is just his normal haircut, which he has always had.

“If it wasn’t for the skin condition I would probably just let it grow a bit, but the school is just not listening to me.”

Mandy, whose daughter, Melissa, 13, is also a pupil at St Robert’s, said James is finding the situation very stressful. She said: “He has been taken out of his lessons and wasn’t allowed to do cookery or PE. He was crying in the toilets the other day.”

Nick Hurn, executive headteacher at the Biddick Lane school, said: “We are not in the habit of commenting on individual cases at St Robert’s. However, the governors have a strict uniform policy that staff and senior staff are expected to enforce. I am satisfied that in this case the school rules have been applied fairly, consistently and without prejudice.”