Primary school berates parents who leave ‘dirty, unkempt children’ to find their own way to school

Staff observed students attending classes 'in a pretty shocking state'

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The Independent Online

A primary school in Somerset has berated parents for sending children to classes in a “pretty shocking state”.

Mothers, fathers and legal guardians of pupils at  St Michael’s Academy in Yeovil, Somerset, received a letter asking that they ensured their offspring were clean and presentable for the day ahead.

It also accused some of not getting out of bed to see their children off to school, lamenting the situation as a “poor indictment of parenting skills”.

The letter said some children arrived at school “dirty, unkempt and not in appropriate school uniform, if any uniform at all”.

The academy, run by headteacher Judith Barrett, also posted the admonishment on the school’s website as a weekly bulletin.

After thanking parents who sent their children to school "clean and tidy and ready for the week", the author of the letter addresses an "increasing number" of problematic students.

The letter said: “Today, being that it is a Monday, quite a few [students] have returned to school in dirty clothes and obviously haven’t had a shower in readiness for Monday morning.

“There are also a lot of children who are getting themselves up in the morning and in to school as their parents are still in bed.

“In a country where there is plentiful running water and washing machines, and shops like Tesco offering entire school uniforms for £10, it is a pretty poor indictment of the parenting skills of some of our families.”

The writer of the letter goes on to say: “I totally appreciate that life is hard for some of you but please make sure your children are clean and ready for school and that includes the correct clothes.”

The letter warns that parents will be asked to take their children home if they do not turn up in the correct uniform.

St Michael’s Academy has around 220 students from the ages of seven to 11, and was rated “good” in Ofsted’s latest report in 2013.

A spokesperson for the school has said it has no comment and will not be releasing a statement at this time.