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Parent refusing to let child wear coat

Discussion in 'Headteachers' started by Dixie1234, Nov 18, 2011.

  1. I have a strange situation where a parent is insisting that a child of 7 is not allowed to wear their coat to or from school. They are insisting that it be left in school in case the child forgets it. As the colder winter months are now approaching, we are concerned about that they are going to catch cold and that they need their coat, especially as the temperature drops. I am going to invite the parents in, but does anyone have any useful suggestions as to the best way to handle it?
  2. Trying to discover the parents' concern? Is it the cost of buying a new coat? Try and meet them. I would tell them to keep their coat for getting to school and back - keep it in the office all day if that will reassure. Buy him a coat to wear at school. Psychology.
  3. Middlemarch

    Middlemarch Star commenter

    You can't catch a cold from simply being cold. The issue here is that being cold for prolonged periods runs a far greater risk - and that's hypothermia.
    I'm bemused by the notion that the parents don't want the child to wear the coat in case s/he 'forgets it' - I think I'd get them in and promise to supervise the wearing of the coat in and on the way out of school, but also insist the coat is clearly labelled with the child's name.
    In the final analysis, if the parents continue to insist I think I'd be suggesting it's an issue for social services, since it comes under neglect for me.
  4. Thanks both. I'm bemused too. As far as I understand at the moment they want them to leave it at school in case they forget it at home. Both parents very insistent. It's not a case of losing it at school, I think.
  5. Middlemarch

    Middlemarch Star commenter

    Yes, that's even more bizarre. I think I'd go strongly on the notion that we can keep him/her warm enough at school - it's on the way to and from school that there's a risk of hypothermia.
  6. anon2799

    anon2799 New commenter

    I'd ask them in for a meeting, there could be underlying financial issues. Do you have an FRW attached to your school? It might be a case for them. Offer to keep a coat in school for them to wear but insist they must wear a coat to walk to and from school. If sensible discussion gets you nowhere I'd have a TAC meeting with a view to setting up a CAF as the child's needs are not being met by the parents. Last year we had a whole month when the temp didn't get above 0. It was -17 for 3 days in my part of the world. The child needs to wear a coat!
  7. Doitforfree

    Doitforfree Star commenter

    Probably about three children in the whole of our local high school ever wear a coat, whatever the weather, because it's not cool. I agree it's pretty odd of the parents to have this reasoning but I doubt this child is going to be unusual in not wearing a coat to and from school.
    One of mine wore shorts and sandals (and no coat) whatever the weather. I made him wear a coat in the snow and only noticed as he walked out of the drive that he was still wearing his sandals, and no socks. He doesn't seem to feel the cold at all.

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