Parents with children at Osborne Road Primary School in Westcliff On Sea have been describing their ANGER to Southend News Network after the headteacher sent an email saying that children have been BANNED from bringing England flags into school during the upcoming Euro 2016 tournament – the ban has also been extended to England shirts. According to the lengthy message that was sent out, the barmy decision has been made over fears that the crosses of St George could lead to complaints from some parents.
We asked headteacher Dr Colin Throop to explain his reasons for the ‘over the top’ banning of England flags and anything else depicting the cross of St George. He said: ‘As the European Championships are getting underway, we are also entering one of the hottest periods of the year before the summer holidays begin. The flag of England has a very high proportion of white on it, and it is well-known that this is the colour that reflects heat and light more than any other. If one of our children holds an England flag in the playground, other children surrounding them could end up getting a dangerous amount of sun rays on them, and we cannot afford to receive any complaints from parents about their children getting sunburnt.’
Dr Throop added: ‘This would be a great opportunity for the children to show their support for teams other than England who are playing. The Welsh flag is all red and green with a little bit of white and this is really safe in terms of deflecting harmful UV rays from the Sun. On the other hand, the Polish flag is a pretty safe choice as well as it is roughly 50% white.’
A spokesperson for the local education authority confirmed that Dr Throop has the authority take make any decisions to ‘protect children from second-hand UV ray exposure,’ or ‘passive UV ray exposure syndrome’ to use its medical name.