An 11-year-old girl was sent home in disgrace after eating chocolate on a school trip to the Isle of Wight.

Holli McCann left for an end of term trip with Year 6 classmates from Bromet Primary School in Oxhey Road, Watford, on July 1.

The following day her mother Kerri, of Springfield Close, Croxley Green, received a message to call the hotel urgently.

Fearing Holli had been seriously hurt, Ms McCann called straight away but then concern turned to anger as headteacher Yvonne Graves instructed her to come and collect Holli straight away because she had broken the "charter" by eating confectionary in the hotel and misbehaving on the beach the previous day.

Ms McCann says she asked Mrs Graves to reconsider but she refused, saying if Holli wasn’t picked up she would have to attend all the activities organised but would not be able to participate in any of them.

Ms McCann said: "Once in the car, Holli then told me that her and three friends had had a midnight feast on Monday night. The following day the children were asked to write their letters home.

"Holli’s was read by a member of staff and handed to Mrs Graves, who organised an immediate search of Holli’s room and suitcase.

"This was a search for chocolate but was carried out in such a manner you would have thought they were running an international drug smuggling operation from their hotel room."

In fact Holli’s crime was to bring a Kit Kat, a Fudge bar and a Freddo on the trip to have a midnight feast with three school friends she was sharing a room with.

Ms McCann - who is unable to work due to panic attacks and stress - said she had scrimped and saved for six months to afford the £300 holiday plus £100 worth of equipment and had to borrow another £150 from friends and family and drive through the night to collect her daughter following the incident.

Ms McCann said: "I am still in shock, I complained to the head but she still hasn’t contacted me after making me go all the way to the Isle of Wight which ended up costing me an absolute fortune.

"Holli said she was really upset because they emptied her toiletry bag into the sink and pulled out the lining in her suitcase.

"She was very upset for a few days after coming back."

Ms McCann - who withdrew Holli from the school for the rest of her final term - made a formal complaint to the school and the governors and has also written to education secretary Michael Gove.

In a letter to Mrs Graves, she said: "What Holli did was wrong but your own behaviour and handling of the situation was disgraceful.

"I am astonished at the way you behaved and have decided that Holli will not be returning to Bromet for obvious reasons."

Watford Observer:

Holli was 'very upset for a few days' after being sent home.

Nobody at the school was willing to comment on the incident but a Hertfordshire County Council spokesman said: "Before the Year 6 trip to the Isle of Wight, parents and pupils were asked to sign a behaviour charter which clearly outlines how pupils should behave during the trip.

"This is to ensure that everyone can have a safe and enjoyable holiday. It was made clear that breaking any of the rules within the charter would result in parents being asked to take their child home, as was the case with this pupil."