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Angela Jackson is defending her daughter's decision to wear the bold eyelashes to school, despite the fact they go against uniform guidelines, explaining that they should be allowed on the basis that they "enhance her self esteem".
Her daughter, Chelsea Silk, 14, turned up at Royal Wootton Bassett Academy, in Wiltshire, last Wednesday to be told that she faced a stint in isolation unless she complied with the rules and removed the lashes.
Chelsea says she was left in tears when a member of staff stood over her in the toilets until she took off the lashes.
Angela was contacted by the school last Wednesday and told false eyelashes were against the uniform rules.
But Chelsea has continued to wear them, with the support of her mother, thus being sent into isolation every day that she turned up in them.
Speaking about the punishment her daughter is enduring, Angela said she is adamant that she won’t back down over what she calls “Lashgate”.
Angela, a kennel assistant and volunteer for dog rescue charities, said: “I went in to pick her up and she was very upset because someone stood over at the basin until she took them off.
"I will not back down on this and she will keep going in to school wearing the eyelashes. It means that she will be in the isolation unit.
"She has never been in there before for anything and has never had a detention.
“I don’t see how wearing false eyelashes impacts on her school work."
Angela is now worried that Chelsea may be prevented from going on a trip to Swanage as part of her GCSE coursework.
She is also concerned that while her daughter is in isolation she is missing out on practical work in preparation for next year’s GCSE exams.
She added: ''I took photographs of her wearing one set of false lashes like she does for school and another of her wearing two.
“I accept that wearing two sets would be inappropriate but I can’t see that the one set can cause any problems.”
Despite her strong opinions on how unfair the whole ordeal is, many mothers have questioned her stance.
Speaking out on social media, it seems some people agreed with the school's uniform policy.
One said: "I am sure you can live without false eyelashes for a few hours."
As a second concurred: "You don't go to a job wearing something that is unnecessary. School is for learning it's not a fashion parade.
"People should encourage their children to follow rules, not to be disobedient and break them."
A third chipped in: "I agree with the school, there’s jobs out there that aren’t allowed to wear acrylic nails, does that mean the company is pathetic?
"Uniform and school policies are no different to company uniform and policies they are there for a reason!
"When I was younger I wasn’t allowed to wear the fashionable blue eyeshadow and mascara and had to take it off at school!"
They went on: "If you can’t abide by school policies then there’s no hope if you get a job with uniform and strict policies in the future!"
A fourth advised: "I wouldn't risk my child's education in her GCSE year. Certainly not over false eyelashes.
"This is such a pointless battle to fight. You don't need to wear false lashes to school."
But a defiant Angela said unless the school rules are reworded specifically to ban the wearing of eyelashes - Chelsea will continue to wear them.
Angela, who has two other children at the same school and a son who left Year 11 last year, added: “I have never had any complaints about Chelsea over anything else.
“Most of the girls in her year wear false eyelashes. She has been told before not to wear them but I totally disagree they are a health hazard.
“I make a stand against the schools pathetic policy in relation to this and stand alongside all of the female students of Royal Wootton Bassett Academy that wish to wear false eyelashes to enhance their natural attributes and boost their self-esteem.
“The lashes do not impede my child’s ability to read, write or learn and I find it absolutely pathetic that the school has chosen the path of sanction which leads to exclusion above the right for my child to be in school being educated over a set of false eyelashes.”
The school’s uniform policy says that make-up should be kept to a minimum and only neutral tones used. It also says no nail varnish, gel nails or artificial nails may be worn. But the school’s website does not specifically mention false lashes.
Deputy head Mari Roberts said: “The school is aware that the mother does not support us right now, but we have spent time working with her and her daughter to de-escalate the situation.
"The school adopts an empathetic inclusive approach to individual student needs as is the case in this instance. Our Behaviour for Learning school system was in place pre-Covid and we have not changed any of the high expectations we have of our students.
"We provide stability and consistency for our students and families in a time of Covid instability.
"The majority of our parent body support us, making us an extremely popular school."
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Topics: Real Life
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