Mum fumes as daughter, 15, banned from school prom for 'raising voice' at teacher

Faith Robson (15) who has been banned from attending her school prom - pictured with her mum Kayla Massey.
Faith Robson ( who has been banned from attending her school prom with her mum Kayla Massey. -Credit:Iain Buist/Newcastle Chronicle

A mum has expressed her outrage after her daughter was barred from attending her school prom. Kayla Massey is challenging the secondary school's decision to exclude her 15-year-old daughter, Faith Robson, and other students from their prom night.

The 39-year-old believes every student should be allowed to experience their prom, despite any previous issues.

Year 11 students at Churchill Community College in Wallsend, North Tyneside, who have been suspended since November last year, were notified they would not be permitted to attend the forthcoming event. However, the headteacher has defended the policy, stating that the conditions for prom attendance were "clearly communicated" to pupils, ChronicleLive reports.

Kayla remarked: "Throughout the school term, if they've been given a punishment they have already done that punishment. Now they've been re-punished by taking away their prom.

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"They only get one prom, it's a celebration of their graduation from school. They can't get that opportunity back. I think it's wrong."

She recounted how her daughter Faith was suspended from Churchill Community College for three days in November after an altercation with a teacher. Kayla explained that Faith was feeling ill at the time but was denied permission to leave school.

The mum-of-two expressed her frustration, saying: "I think if they had been permanently excluded from the school that's understandable because they didn't complete school. But anyone who completed school, whatever problems they had through the school journey, should be entitled to prom.

"She really wants to go to prom, I think all of them do. There's so many kids with different problems and so many parents that are upset. I feel my daughter, and everyone else, has worked hard to graduate school and they've taken it away from them.

"It's been a negative rather than a positive before their exams. They could have boosted them all and gave them something to look forward to!"

Kayla, also mother to Deacon, 13, shared her daughter's experience: "Just after her mock exams she had a bad day. She had a panic attack and got upset. She had an argument, with a raised voice, with a teacher.

"It was the first time she'd ever had an argument with a teacher. She'd just lost her nanna and her best friend around that time. She was struggling. I think it was the pressure of her mocks and losing her best friend and her nanna that's been the trigger."

Kayla claims this was the first instance of Faith being suspended from school and feels the school did not adequately consider the personal losses she experienced at the time.

She stated: "They wanted to keep her in school. She would have missed two lessons of dance and photography (if she had gone home). The argument resulted in her missing the rest of the week of education on suspension. She was off for the rest of the school week - three days."

Faith is part of the Army Cadets and harbours plans to study photography at Newcastle College.

Kayla voiced her disappointment, stating that she'd been excitedly anticipating prom and already has a dream dress awaiting. But now, it seems she'll have to watch from afar as her classmates enjoy the occasion she cannot attend.

The mother-of-two added: "If her behaviour had been bad throughout the time and she's had bad grades I could maybe get my head around it. But I still think whatever the kids have achieved they've tried their best.

"We have got a dress that we have paid for. We have shopped for it over the last 12 months. She's been looking forward to it. She's got her hair all planned out and it's devastating for her.

"They're not backing down. They don't care if dresses have been paid for or people have been saving for a long period of time."

Kayla mentioned that she sought information regarding the number of students being excluded from the prom, but claimed that the school hasn't disclosed this data.

Furthermore, Kayla shared that a local pub has offered its premises for those unable to attend the official prom. Yet she believes: "I still feel it will divide the kids. They should be able to attend the prom all together."

Kayla disclosed that she was made aware of her daughter's exclusion from the prom through a letter sent by the school last month, conceding that she doesn't recall receiving a prior letter from November that outlined the criteria for attending the prom.

Paul Johnson, head teacher at Churchill Community College, said: "Our annual Year 11 Prom is an evening to celebrate and reward pupils for their hard work, behaviour, and achievements at Churchill.

"As is common practice across many other secondary schools, the behaviour of students has an impact on whether they attend prom.

"The rules around attending prom, and the behaviour expected from pupils in order to attend, were clearly communicated to all parents and carers in November and have been reinforced throughout the academic year."

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