School bans fake nails because they are ruining girls’ handwriting

Camilla Turner
Burnside College wrote to parents earlier this year to warn about acrylic nail extensions - PA Wire

A school has banned fake nails because they are ruining girls’ handwriting.

Burnside College, a co-educational school in Wallsend, North Tyneside, wrote to parents earlier this year to warn about acrylic nail extensions.

"We are currently in the process of revising our whole school uniform policy due to the increased number of students attending school wearing acrylic nail extensions,” the school told parents.

Some students are unable to fully access the curriculum and in extreme cases are unable to use a pen, having a detrimental effect on their learning.”  

The school has now banned acrylic nails and nail extensions, explaining that nails should be a "sensible length that will not affect participation in PE or practical subjects".  

Students were warned they faced "appropriate sanctions" if they failed to comply with the new rules. But the move has prompted a backlash from angry parents who complained it was "bonkers".  

Gracie Fish, 15, who is a pupil at the school, was ordered to remove her green gel nails on health and safety grounds before a week-long placement at a college in Newcastle. When she refused, she was ordered to spend the week in isolation.  

Her mother, said: "I just don't see what part of this is health and safety, especially as she's doing health and beauty.

 "The school claimed they had to be taken off because she was representing the school, but I think she's been discriminated against.  How does this stop her doing a job, especially one to do with beauty? It is pathetic, and she was devastated."

Ms Fish, 46, said that she has pulled her daughter out of the school in protest.  "I lost my temper and said she's not going back in September," she said. 

"These were not some big Jerry Springer-style nails you used to see on some of the lasses on there, they were dead natural-looking. And what 15-year-old doesn't have gel coloured nails?"