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14th Jul 2022

Boy punished for wearing shorts to school in heatwave

He was sent home on a second day.

A boy in the UK has been punished for wearing shorts to school amid the massive heatwave taking hold in the UK.

The 13 year old was put into an isolation room after wearing shorts to school.

Harrison Utting was sent to a room “like a prison” for turning up his school trousers in Sittingbourne, Kent, on Monday morning.

His father Terry was forced to take him out of school the same day and again the following day after he wore the shorts to school, which doesn’t have air conditioning.

Terry said his son had been brought into Westlands School’s Pastoral Support Programme room on his own due to the incident.

He has criticised the school’s actions and their ban on shorts in the classroom when the country has been given weather warnings due to the heat.

He told Metro UK: “I don’t think it’s right the way the school is treating its students.

“There is a blanket ban on shorts but there is no air-conditioning in the classrooms and the pupils are roasting in 30C heat.

“I read that in another school all the boys ended up wearing skirts as that was the only way they could keep cool and follow the dress code.”

Girls in Harrison’s school are allowed to wear skirts as part of the uniform, making it more comfortable for them to deal in the hot weather.

The weather in Kent, where the school is based, hit temperatures of 26C, with the weather in other parts of the UK reaching the low 30s.

Temperatures are set to rise even further in the coming week as the Met Office warned of the heat getting to 35C.

The school has stood by its strict uniform policy but has said it could change if the temperature continues to rise.

The principal at the school, Christina Honess, told Metro that there is a clear uniform policy that all parents are informed of, but it is one that is reviewed regularly.

She added that in the circumstances of heat like this, they “would be willing to make reasonable adjustments.”

The National Union of Teachers in the UK has advised that certain steps like closing classrooms due to hot conditions or moving them to cooler locations should be taken.

They said that 26C should be used as the trigger for these measures and that “dress codes can also be relaxed”.