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Parents banned from Gaywood school sports day

GV picture of Howard Junior School, Parkway King's Lynn
GV picture of Howard Junior School, Parkway King's Lynn

For many children, sports day is one of the most fun and carefree events in their calendar.

But for youngsters at one Lynn primary school, this will not be shared with their families as parents have been banned due to alleged “aggressive” behaviour towards staff.

Pupils at Howard Junior School in Gaywood will not be joined by their parents and carers for sports day, which is due to take place on Wednesday, in a move the school says is necessary to “ensure the safety” of pupils and staff.

In a letter sent home this week, which is titled ‘Heightened Security’, headteacher Gregory Hill said: “Some of you will have noticed a police and security presence at school.

“This has resulted from the actions of an extremely small minority of parents who have taken it upon themselves to threaten staff in an intimidating and aggressive manner.”

Mr Hill said abusive language had also been used, which was “totally unacceptable” in the presence of children.

He insisted staff had the right to feel safe in their workplace, adding: “The school will continue to ban parents who conduct themselves in an inappropriate manner.

“All incidents of intimidation, violence or threatened violence will be reported to the police.

“If parents cannot conduct themselves appropriately, then to ensure the safety of staff, pupils and indeed other parents, we have decided that this year’s sports day will take place with pupils only and unfortunately, parents are now not invited.

“This decision has not been taken lightly and is a real shame for the children, but we need to guarantee the safety of our staff and pupils.”

Mr Hill said the behaviour of a small minority had “ruined matters for all concerned”.

But one parent, who asked not to be named, said she was disappointed at the decision.

She said: “There are a lot of angry parents about this.”

She also claimed several parents are considering taking their children out of the school as their views “aren’t listened to.”

Meanwhile, police in Lynn have confirmed that officers were called to two incidents at the school – a ‘low level’ one in June which has since been resolved and another this week which is being investigated.

The school had not responded to request for comment at the time of going to press.

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