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15 April 2019, 15:54
The parents argued that primary school children shouldn't be punished over something they can't control
A primary school in Stoke-on-Trent has been slammed by angry parents after they held an "exclusive" tea party only for the children who had 100 per cent attendance.
The party was held on the last day before the easter holidays kicked off and they even had a chocolate fountain.
Packmoor Ormiston Academy invited dozens of children to enjoy a lavish afternoon tea in the sunshine last week, leaving the ones who had fallen short of 100 per cent out of the fun.
The school posted photos on their Facebook page with the caption "Well done to all our children who gained 100% attendance this term. They all enjoyed an afternoon tea party in the spring sunshine.
"A reminder that our attendance incentive begins again after the Easter break with a further reward at the end of the summer term."
This didn't go down well with some of the parents. Leigh Hayward commented: "Not happy, why should children be penalised when they are genuinely ill.
"My son was left out of it along with only a couple of others in his class, whilst all the time can see through the window while the rest were “treated”".
Another named Jo Oliver said: "What a kick in the teeth for so many students. This little tea party is like a celebration of elitism and pettiness. Schools should be better than this.
"Exclusion is no way to set an example, and inspire children to achieve."
The school defended their rewarding scheme, saying: “The afternoon tea party is just one of the many reward opportunities given to pupils throughout the year and in this instance, it focuses on attendance.
"Since launching in September, we are pleased that the initiative has been positively received by almost all parents, as well as it leading to a marked improvement in overall attendance at the school.
The spokesperson added: “As a school, we are committed to raising educational standards and ensuring that all pupils have the opportunity to fulfil their potential.
"We believe that good attendance is essential in order to facilitate teaching and learning, and it is important that pupils who achieve this are recognised."