Head-shave teenager can return to lessons

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A mass walkout by pupils in support of a schoolboy banned from class for having his head shaved for charity has prompted school bosses to do a U-turn.

Johnson, 14, was ordered to be taught in isolation for flouting the school uniform code and getting his head shaved at a Macmillan cancer charity event.

The teenager, from Milford Haven, west Wales, raised £700 with a friend last weekend when he took part in the charity’s UK-wide annual coffee morning.

The Milford Haven School pupil wanted to raise cash for cancer research after his aunt was diagnosed with the disease.

But he went ahead with the charity event despite being warned by the school not to get his head shaved. As a result he was removed from class when he showed up at school last Monday without a hair on his head.

A walkout by up to 250 pupils in protest appears to have helped force a rethink.

Lucy O’Neill, the teenager’s mother, said her son would be allowed back in to classes as normal from next Monday.

“I’m very proud of Rhys and I’ve been completely overwhelmed by the support from his friends, fellow students and parents,” she said.

“I’m happy that they achieved what they wanted through the protest and it proved that they weren’t prepared to back down.”

She said the decision regarding her son was taken after she had met senior teachers at the school.

On Monday she will meet with headteacher Rod Francis together with her son, who wants an apology from the school for the way he has been treated.

A spokesman for Milford Haven School said: “The pupil in question and his mother were informed of the consequences of breaking the uniform and appearance rules prior to doing so.

“When the rules were broken, an appropriate sanction was enforced, namely supervised study.

“This was a short-term measure and a return to the pupil’s normal timetable would have been effective once he complied with the school’s ruling.

“While this morning’s demonstration by some pupils was disappointing and ill-advised, lessons for the vast majority of pupils continued as normal.”