Parents slam 'disgusting' uniform policy in Mansfield schools during extreme hot weather

Concerned parents are hitting out against school uniform policy at a number of local schools, complaining that children are ‘overheating’ in class during the hot weather.

By Lucy Roberts
Friday, 15th July 2022, 3:57 pm

The area is currently experiencing record-breaking high temperatures, with the hot weather set to continue into next week.

And with the heatwave here to stay, parent Sarah Gamble is seriously concerned that children at Ashfield School in Kirkby are becoming unwell due to an ‘unfair’ school uniform policy.

She said: “Some have actually overheated – one mum mentioned to me that her child was throwing up from the heat this week, really quite ill with it.

Parents are concerned that their children will 'overheat' if the schools don't change their policy.

“There are some students are getting prickly heat rashes and heat exhaustion, and I know it has left many of the students feeling sluggish and unable to concentrate properly.

“My son also suffers from migraines brought on by heat and tiredness.

Heatstroke is a very dangerous thing and it can be especially dangerous in children.

“I have been trying to campaign against our children having to wear the full uniform, or at least relaxed some more so our children don’t overheat."

Ashfield School’s current school uniform, Sarah said, is skirts to be worn with tights or ankle socks, blouses, ties and blazers for girls; and full length trousers, shirts and ties with blazers for boys.

“They have ‘relaxed’ the rules to carrying their blazers so it’s visible but nothing else,” Sarah said.“Myself and a lot of other parents are very unhappy and concerned about this.

“We believe that the school should relax rules to removing ties and no blazer carrying, or alternatively allow them to wear their PE kit or something that’s lightweight to keep our children cooler.”

Sarah said she has contacted the school via various means to try and persuade them to relax their policy.

She said: “The school seems to adopt this firm stance on uniform before the health and welfare of their students, which I think is disgusting.

“A lot of their staff are walking around in lightweight outfits with buttons undone, which is most unfair.

“They only have air conditioned rooms in certain parts of the building so not all classes will be as well-ventilated. I also believe that because the children are suffering with the heat, it can’t be conducive to learning.”

In response to the concerns, Ashfield School sent a letter out to parents this week, which read: “Due to the extreme hot weather forecast for Monday and Tuesday, students will not need to bring their blazer to school on these days.

“During the hot weather students are also encouraged to spend social times in shaded areas that are around the school, such as the dining hall or year base.

“We will respond accordingly as the week progresses, communicating with staff, students and parents as required.”

The school has been approached for further comment.

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Meanwhile, parents of students at The Manor Academy in Mansfield were concerned that the school was not permitting boys to wear shorts during the hot weather.

Parent Catherine Rhodes-Fraser said earlier this week: “The school is refusing to let the boys wear shorts in this heat because its not uniform policy – but skirts are?

“They won't even compromise and let them wear their Manor logo PE shorts.”

The school has since updated its policy ahead of the predicted extreme temperatures for next Monday and Tuesday, stating: “Given the increased severity of the weather, we will allow students to wear branded PE shorts should they wish to during the days when there is a weather warning.”

At the Samworth Church Academy in Mansfield, students have been told that they must continue to bring their blazers in to school despite the hot temperatures.

The school posted on its Facebook page: “Students are expected to bring their blazers with them into school regardless of the weather.

“This is primarily because a large percentage of our students like to use them as their pencil case and general storage, so with an aim to not disrupt lessons and learning time, they will still need them.

“We won't be expecting students to wear them all day (and in some cases not at all), but we will keep students updated as the temperature begins to rise.”