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Father Mark Diggens 'fuming' at Bushey Meads School treatment of charity head-shave daughter Jade Diggens
The father of a 14-year-old girl has expressed his anger at a Bushey school for putting his daughter in isolation after she shaved her head in memory of her grandparents.
Mark Diggens said he is "fuming" at Bushey Meads School after they did not allow his daughter Jade to sit her GCSE Physics exam last week.
Jade Diggens decided to have her hair chopped last Thursday after being inspired by singer Jessie J, who did in March for Comic Relief.
Having lost grandparents to cancer, Jade wanted to help raise money for Cancer research, and recently took part in a race for life.
Mr Diggens said they were expecting a fallout after the shave but did not think his daughter would not be allowed to sit an exam.
He said: "This has turned into a nightmare. Jade was told before she shaved her head there would be consequences, most likely that she would be put in isolation.
"What we did not know is that she would be forced to miss one exam and take another in unacceptable conditions. We are absolutely fuming,"
Jade was due to take a Physics GCSE on Friday but Mr Diggens said she was not allowed to sit it. She had a Maths exam on Monday, which she was allowed to sit in the library away from her peers.
Mr Diggens continued: "Jade was very upset because the library was loud and she could not concentrate.
"This whole situation is taking its toll emotionally on Jade and not only is she facing educational isolation, she is being socially isolated.
"All me and my wife want is for Jade to be allowed to continue with mainstream learning and given the same amount of work as her peers."
Mr Diggens said Jade was not allowed outside with her friends at break time, and is having to go to lunch before the other pupils.
The 45-year-old continued: "It is ridiculous. Jade has told us she would not change a thing. We are proud she has done this amazing thing for charity and are not ashamed of what she has done.
"Year 10 is a crucial time for children’s education and to be put in isolation is not acceptable. Her education should not be made to suffer.
"In my honest opinion I think the school are embarrassed of her. We will continue to support her throughout. We are upset because social standing is important to a 14-year-old girl and she is being made to suffer."
The school was approached for comment and said Jade was back in class.
Headteacher Keith Douglas said: "Any student who arrives at school with an extreme haircut is in breach of Bushey Meads school rules. "However in the case of the student in this instance, I can confirm that she is in class only because I realise that this is in aid of charity.
"I have however requested that she wears a hat through this week to the end of term."
Jade has raised £300 to date for cancer research and is still collecting.
Bushey Meads is not the first school in the area to take a hard line stance on charity head shaves. For more on a recent similar case in St Albans see here.
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