Derbyshire teenager told she 'cannot wear cap to school' despite losing hair due to illness
An outraged Derbyshire dad says his daughter’s school will not allow her to wear a cap as uniform, even though she has lost her hair through illness.
Shaun Goodwin and his partner Joanne are calling on Heritage High School, in Clowne, to allow their 13-year-old daughter Ella to ‘maintain her dignity’ by wearing a baseball cap and hoodie during the school day.
The secondary school pupil has been battling chronic recurrent multifocal osteomyelitis (CRMO) for over two years, a rare and serious disease which causes severe pain and swelling in the bones.
She has recently lost large parts of her hair – which doctors believe could be due to the incurable illness – and had been wearing a wig but found this uncomfortable.
After reaching out to the school for support, Shaun says the family were left gobsmacked to be told she could not wear a cap or hoodie because it was against their policy.
He said: “This illness has been going for two and a half years, we’ve had no support from the school whatsoever. Ella did have quite long hair and the doctors had advised her to have a wig from the Little Princess Trust so they made her wig and we shaved all her hair off, which she wanted.
"I think then it hit her how bad her hair loss was. She didn’t like the wig so she’s choosing not to wear it which is down to her.
"She wants to wear a cap and hoodie because the hoodie covers the back of her head. We’ve tried to explain this to school and they were having none of it, they’re saying it’s school policies.
"We understand the uniform policy, I’d even get a hat with Heritage High on it. But they’ve took it upon themselves to not let Ella wear a hat and hoodie. They've told my partner point blank ‘no’ she’s not wearing it.”
Heritage High said discussions are ongoing around Ella’s situation.
A school spokesperson said: “We are continuing to do everything we can to ensure the student and her family are appropriately supported through this challenging period.
"We are currently in discussions about making further necessary arrangements, including around uniform requirements, to ensure she feels as comfortable and supported as possible when at school.”