Ipswich Academy pupils punished for wearing wrong trousers
Concerns have been raised by a parent at a struggling academy as its new sponsor takes a no-nonsense approach to uniform.
Pupils at Ipswich Academy, formerly Holywells High School, have been warned rules around appearance would be “rigorously enforced”.
The school was taken over by Paradigm Trust and given a new principal on September 1 as the Government ordered a major shake-up after it was placed in special measures in January.
A father, who has a 15-year-old daughter at the school and did not want to be named, said: “Over the past two days quite a stir is going on in regards to how strict they have decided to be regarding school uniform. One of the students was put in detention for wearing pink socks and a girl with dark red dyed hair has been threatened with exclusion.”
The parent said he had a meeting with the new principal, Amanda Phillips, who is also the executive principal of Paradigm Trust, about his daughter’s trousers. The pupils are required to wear “plain black loose leg trousers”, but the father said his daughter was 5ft 10ins tall and a size 6, so he could not find suitable straight leg trousers.
“I looked everywhere trying to find these style of trousers and they were all too short,” he added. “We found some that were slightly tighter fitting. I went in to see the principal and she said it was impeding my child’s education if I didn’t buy the trousers they have recommended.”
The father said children were getting put into isolation every day for not wearing the correct trousers.
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He added: “When the new trust came in I was hoping it would turn the school around but their main focus has been what style of trousers and what colours socks the students are wearing.”
A spokeswoman from Paradigm Trust said a letter was sent out to parents/carers last week to explain that uniform rules would be kept the same but they would be “more rigorously enforced”.
“Students are expected to wear the Ipswich Academy blazer and plain black loose leg trousers,” the spokeswoman added. “We believe that we have been clear and we expect our standards to be maintained. However, under no circumstances was exclusion mentioned to students or parents/carers in relation to school uniform.”