Council intervenes to help resolve uniform row at Doncaster school

Ash Hill Academy. Picture: Google
Ash Hill Academy. Picture: Google

Council chiefs intervened to help resolve a dispute between parents and a school over student uniforms.

Mums and dads of children who attend Ash Hill Academy in Hatfield, Doncaster, told how they used to be able to buy their kids' uniforms from any supermarket or clothes shop so long as it met the dress code.

The text sent to parents.

The text sent to parents.

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But the school sent out letters over the summer stating they must now buy uniforms and PE kits from a single supplier for their children for the start of the forthcoming academic year in September.

The move sparked protests as some parents claimed the new uniforms they were being asked to buy were too costly and "bobbled" too easily.

They were also angry because the new supplier - SPT Uniforms - is based near Leeds, meaning parents faced a trek of almost 30 miles to the shop.

Since an online petition was signed by more than 100 parents calling for a re-think the school has since agreed to change the policy.

And Doncaster Council today revealed that they intervened to help resolve the dispute.

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Damian Allen, Doncaster Council’s director of people, said: “The local authority does not set uniform policy or subsequent changes, this is determined by academies and schools.

"However, following concerns raised by parents, we liaised closely with Delta Multi-Academy Trust to review and seek a resolution to the issues.

"We are pleased an appropriate solution has been agreed.”

Mum Tammy Haver previously claimed it would have cost almost double to pay for uniforms and PE kits for her two 13-year-old daughters.

The 45-year-old, of Dunscroft, was also angry because parents would have to fork out "petrol money or train tickets" to go and purchase items from the shop in person.

But following complaints, a text message was sent out to parents on Friday evening from principal John Higgins, which said that while students are still required to wear blazer, tie and PE top bearing the academy logo, "all other uniform" can be purchased from any supplier.

A spokesperson for SPT Uniforms said their blazers are actually £4 cheaper than the previous supplier and claimed that "with additional savings though out the full uniform we have saved families money."

They stressed there has been "no response from any customers regarding ‘bobbling’."

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The spokesperson also tackled the distance issue and said they have organsed three pop-up shops in Doncaster which "were all great successes."

The school is a member of the Delta Academies Trust. They have been asked for comment and we are awaiting a reply.