An open letter to Ecclesfield School.

I’d like to start this off by thanking the people/things that made my time at Ecclesfield School enjoyable. Despite what I’m about to talk about, my time at school hasn’t been completely terrible. I’ve enjoyed the musicals, the concerts, and even the odd lesson. But, unfortunately, what I’m about to talk about isn’t positive whatsoever.

Today was my last official day at school and in the excitement of some form of freedom, I dyed my hair pastel pink. I’ve had perfect uniform for 5 years and have hesitated from dying my hair any unnatural colours (even though I have fantasised about having brightly coloured hair). To be honest, I didn’t think anything of it. Other students seemed to be doing it and I was only going in to sit an exam, then I was going home. So, I walked into school feeling really good about myself when I was stopped at the school gates by the head teacher. I’ll admit, I panicked at this point. 15 minutes before I was due to sit my physics exam and I was told to sit outside my deputy head’s office. Great. So, I sat there patiently and was angrily greeted by the deputy head. I knew I was going to get in trouble, but the way she went about it was really unnecessary. Within this conversation, I was called ‘selfish’ , a ‘dissapointment’ and was told that my hair colour is a distraction to other students. 

This is when my blood started boiling. Not because I was getting into trouble, but because this had all stemmed from a hair colour. You pride yourselves on being a school that massively objects to discrimination , yet you say that having an unnatural hair colour is ‘unemployable’. That is discriminatory! You should be teaching students to be themselves! Not telling them that employers will frown upon them for being who they want to be. Also, maybe you should start telling students to pay attention to their education rather than focus themselves on a girl with pink hair. 

After being talked to like absolute trash, I was ‘escorted’ to an exam hall with less people and was placed right at the back. This not only took 5 minutes off of my required time for my exam, but was completely unnecessary. I walked out of that building after sitting my exam completely outraged because of how such an impressionable school handled such a minor situation. It’s hair. I’ve never truented. I’ve never wore incorrect uniform. I’ve never been a distraction in class. I’ve had no behaviour issues. Yet, I was treated like an imbecile simply because I dyed my hair.

The way you choose to look is how a lot of express themselves. And by suppressing this, you are teaching the youth of today that everyone must look the same in order to fit in. I say scrap that. Obviously, rules are rules, but stripping students of their expression and creativity is beyond belief and clipping young people’s wings isn’t teaching them to be unique. Maybe you should start celebrating individualism and originality rather than deeming it as unnaceptable. I waited 5 years to be myself, and I don’t think that other students should have to. 

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