Dad’s fury after daughter excluded from class for wearing a nose stud
Ian Long, 48, was called to pick up his 13-year-old daughter Kimberley from school on Tuesday after a ruling he has branded “ridiculous”.
Kimberley had her nose pierced six weeks ago and was permitted by the school to cover it up with a plaster until after Easter, when the stud would have to be removed.
However Mr Long, from Blackpool, said his daughter did not want to remove the piercing as she was worried it would heal up.
It is estimated a nostril piercing can take up to six months to fully heal.
Mr Long, who was last year fined £150 for keeping his daughter off school sick, said the piercing had no impact on his daughter’s learning.
Three of Kimberley’s friends, who are also students at Montgomery Academy in Blackpool, got the same piercing done at the same time.
Mr Long said: “I said could she not cover it up with a plaster? But they said that’s not good enough and she’s got to take it out. Yet her own best friend in school has been allowed to cover hers up with a plaster.
“She has been off a few times just down to general illness - just stuff that parents know about where you don’t necessarily have to take your child to a doctor.
“We were taken to court last year for Kimberley being poorly and both myself and my wife were fined. Now even if she is ill she has to go to school.
“Her education’s very, very important and she’s not getting her education if she’s sat at home because of a little piercing in her nose. I think it’s absolutely ridiculous. She should have been allowed to cover it up with a plaster.”
However, headteacher of Montgomery Academy Stephen Careless said that the school held strict rules against facial piercing that it expected parents to be aware of.
He said: “Montgomery’s uniform has always included a statement saying that facial piercings are not allowed.
“Parents are reminded annually of the rule and they are advised that if their son or daughter is considering it they should wait until the summer holidays to get it done and for it to heal so that it can be taken out in time for the new school term.”
Mr Long said he was not aware of the rule against piercings when Kimberley had her nose pierced at a shop in Blackpool town centre, but that he did not want to waste the £30 spent on the piercing by allowing it to close up.
Head teacher Stephen Careless said: “Unfortunately some six weeks ago, despite warnings, four students had their noses pierced.
“They were given plasters to cover the stud whilst the piercing healed and given a letter for parents, stating that they would not be allowed to wear their piercing whether it was covered or not, after the Easter break.
“A letter went to all parents stating that students who refused to take it out would be put in isolation until they removed it.
“The school has been in regular contact with the families involved.
“Two students arrived (on Tuesday) with their nose studs still in and were asked to remove them.
“One tried at length to remove it and got half of it out.
“Due to her efforts to remove it she was allowed to go to lesson with a plaster over the piercing for yesterday only.
“Another student refused point blank to cooperate and also to sit in isolation for the day. This person was subsequently excluded for the rest of the day.
“(On Wednesday) there was a meeting with the student and father, where the school restated its position on nose-studs and copies of the letters previously sent were given again to the parent.
“The student again refused to take it out and again refused to sit in isolation. The father said that he would take his daughter back to the shop where she got the piercing to have it removed and his daughter would be back (on Thursday).”
Mr Long, who works as a removal man, said that he took Kimberley back to the shop where she had her piercing done to replace the stud with a much smaller, plastic piercing ‘the size of a pin head’, but that the school had excluded her again yesterday.
Mr Careless said: “We hope that she will remove the piercing as soon as possible to enable her to re-join her regular classes.”