Gover­nors not told of uni­form change

Crit­i­cism lev­elled at school for lack of con­sul­ta­tion

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - NEWS - By Laura Mowat laura.mowat@trin­i­tymir­

A PAR­ENT is disgruntled after dis­cov­er­ing that gover­nors had not been prop­erly con­sulted re­gard­ing a change in pol­icy on school uni­form.

Robin Wal­ters found out through a Free­dom of In­for­ma­tion re­quest that Dr Chal­loner’s High School, in Lit­tle Chal­font, had not raised the sub­ject of a school uni­form change with gover­nors. The change made the sixth form school uni­form smarter, in­clud­ing tai­lored jack­ets and trousers and was en­forced at the be­gin­ning of this aca­demic year.

Mr Wal­ters said: “The Depart­ment of Ed­u­ca­tion say that school pol­icy should be dis­cussed by the board of gover­nors. The gov­ern­ing body should have con­trol over what is go­ing on in the school.”

The stu­dents or­gan­ised a pe­ti­tion in July against the change, which 700 stu­dents and par­ents signed.

Mr Wal­ters added: “The ques­tion of what pol­icy should be fol­lowed has not been dis­cussed by the gover­nors at all. In­stead, once it be­came ap­par­ent that there was sig­nif­i­cant op­po­si­tion, and after pub­li­ca­tion of our open let­ter, gover­nors were be­lat­edly asked to agree to the new pol­icy by email.

“This is not a valid method for the gover­nors to make a decision; their ar­ti­cles of as­so­ci­a­tion make very clear, in de­tail, how de­ci­sions are sup­posed to be made. It equates to unau­dited and un­ev­i­denced de­ci­sion­mak­ing by dik­tat.”

In an open let­ter to the school in July, Mr Wal­ters said: “Be­fore it is too late, we ask that you ur­gently re­view both the new dress code and the pro­ce­dures that led to its im­po­si­tion with­out prior dis­cus­sion.”

In a let­ter to par­ents on July 22, head­teacher Ian Cook­sey said: “We be­lieve we have set­tled on an ap­proach which is less pre­scrip­tive than some other schools, but still en­sures that the girls are dressed in a smart fash­ion.

“I ap­pre­ci­ate that there will not be unan­i­mous ap­proval of our ap­proach; we are un­likely to please ev­ery­one on this is­sue.”

In re­sponse to our re­quest, Dr Chal­loner’s made no fur­ther com­ment.

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