Boy, 13, sent home on school return after lockdown haircut goes wrong

A schoolboy was sent home minutes after retuning to class because teachers didn't approve of a lockdown haircut his mum says she was forced to give him.

Lealan Hague, a Year 9 pupil at Exmouth Community College, Devon, was looking forward to socialising with his friends after months without seeing them.

But he was kept apart from his pals after teachers deemed his trim "extreme and too short".

The 13-year-old's mum Kirsty told Devon Live how she had no choice but to cut the lad's hair herself.

She claims the blade on her hair clippers had broken, meaning she could only give him a zero around the sides – while leaving his longer hair on top.

The angry parent says schools must cut mums and dads some slack with barbers and hairdressers shut for months.

She said: "Lealan badly needed a haircut, as do many, so we cut his hair short because he really suffers from itching with longer hair. Since Lealan was about five he has always had his hair fully shaved, but when he started at Exmouth Community College he was not allowed to do that any more.

"Instead we've kept it as short as is permitted. It got a bit long and wild during lockdown so I gave him a short back and sides, but it was grade zero as our clipper blade is broken.

"I thought the school would be a bit more lenient considering the current circumstances, and understand why."

She claims the school did everything in their power to stop other students seeing his haircut – and says they went too far.

"On his first day back he said he had no break times, no lunch time and had to stay in the room all day because of his hair cut," she told the website. "They got his lunch from the canteen for him as he wasn’t allowed to leave the room.

"When he wanted to go to the toilet he was told he would have to wait until everyone was in class so that they would not see his hair cut that is deemed unsuitable for school.

"I could understand if his hair had markings or things cut into it, or had been coloured, but he's just literally had a haircut at home which does not affect his learning.

"It's hard enough for children and everyone at the moment; they don't need this on top. He has been in isolation since last March and we haven't let him go out much or meet his friends.."

Andrew Davis, principal at Exmouth Community College, said: "As you would expect, the college has high standards around the appearance of our students. This includes the appropriate wearing of uniform, jewellery and haircuts.

"During lockdown we are aware that some students find it difficult to have an appropriate haircut and so we have modified our normal standards to accommodate such issues.

"In this particular case, it was a very extreme haircut and so we did provide alternative onsite learning while we investigated the circumstances.

"Within a short space of time those circumstances were explained to us and the student was allowed to return to his lessons as normal and no further action will be taken."

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