Photos have emerged of the fake eyelashes at the centre of the ‘lashgate’ storm that has seen a mother defy a school over its treatment of her teenage daughter.
Anglea Jacksson says a teacher stood over her 14-year-old daughter Chelsea in a school toilet as she removed the lashes, according to the Daily Record.
But Ms Jackson, who works as a kennel assistant and volunteer for dog rescue charities, has sent her daughter to class every day wearing the lashes in an act of defiance.
Ms Jackson was contacted by the Royal Wootton Bassett Academy in Wiltshire last Wednesday and told false eyelashes were against the uniform rules.
Chelsea has been told she will be placed in isolation every day that she wears lashes at school.
But Ms Jackson is adamant that she won’t back down over what she calls “Lashgate”.
She said: “I will not back down on this and she will keep going in to school wearing the eyelashes. It means that she will be in the isolation unit.
“I have never had any complaints about Chelsea over anything else.”
Ms Jackson said she was “making a stand” with girls at the school against this policy, adding that there is nothing wrong with wearing fake lashes.
She said: “The lashes do not impede my child’s ability to read, write or learn and I find it absolutely pathetic that the school has chosen the path of sanction which leads to exclusion above the right for my child to be in school being educated over a set of false eyelashes.”
Ms Jackson’s protest has sparked a backlash on social media, with hundreds of people agreeing with the school’s strict uniform policy.
One said: “I am sure you can live without false eyelashes for a few hours.”
A second said: “You don’t go to a job wearing something that is unnecessary. School is for learning it’s not a fashion parade.
“People should encourage their children to follow rules, not to be disobedient and break them.”
Another said: “I wouldn’t risk my child’s education in her GCSE year. Certainly not over false eyelashes. This is such a pointless battle to fight. You don’t need to wear false lashes to school.”
Another said “It’s a school not a bloody nightclub!”, while another said: “I hope some of these school CHILDREN think about applying for the armed forces.”
Ms Jackson remains defiant, saying that unless the school rules are reworded to specifically ban the wearing of eyelashes, Chelsea will continue to wear them.
The school’s uniform policy on its website, which bans nail varnish, gel and fake nails, says that make-up should be kept to a minimum, and only use neutral tones – but it does not mention lashes.
Angela is now concerned that while her daughter is in isolation she is missing out on practical work in preparation for next year’s GCSE exams.
Deputy Head Mari Roberts said: “The school is aware that the mother does not support us right now, but we have spent time working with her and her daughter to de-escalate the situation.”
She added: “We provide stability and consistency for our students and families in a time of Covid instability.
“The majority of our parent body support us, making us an extremely popular school.”