A distressed mother has hit out at “disgusting” disciplinary procedures at a Worksop school which saw her pre-teen son “locked in isolation” for seven hours.
Heather Mcgee said her 12-year-old son was “treated like a prisoner” when Outwood Academy Valley teachers placed him in isolation for being late to school one morning this week.
Heather claims her son was a few minutes late after falling off his bike and ripping his trousers, but instead of rectifying the situation she said staff placed him in isolation from 8.30am to 3.30pm.
She said: “It’s disgusting. They might as well have locked my son in a prison cell.
“I am a bone cancer patient and my son has enough to deal with, without being unfairly locked alone in a room for hours on end.
“He is a very well-mannered and pleasant lad who does not deserve to be treated like this.”
Heather, who is also mum to two older daughters, raised concerns about how she felt the disciplinary procedure was affecting learning and self-esteem at the school.
She said: “Pupils are not learning when taken out of class and put into isolation.
“My son was just given a book to read – I don’t see what that is supposed to achieve.”
Heather said she is now considering finding an alternative school for her son to attend.
Both Outwood Academy Valley and Outwood Academy Portland have come under fire for their strict approach in the past.
But both schools have gone on to achieve some of the best results in Nottinghamshire and nationally, recently achieving “Outstanding” Ofsted ratings in all categories.
Dave Cavell, Outwood Academy Valley principal, said: “It is unfortunate that the academy’s lateness policy has clearly caused upset for this parent.
“However, while I will not comment on an individual child in the press, I can assure parents that in cases of lateness a detention is issued in the first instance and a child would only receive a day in consequences if they fail to attend this detention.”
The academy said it always recommend that, where a parent or carer is unhappy with an academy policy, they “contact the academy directly to resolve the problem, rather than the press.”