School postpones uniform logo plans

New Principal at The Samworth Church Academy Mansfield, Principal Barry Found pictured with students
New Principal at The Samworth Church Academy Mansfield, Principal Barry Found pictured with students

A Mansfield school has postponed controversial plans to insist pupils wear shirts and trousers with the school logo on them.

Samworth Church Academy’s decision to make pupils wear the branded items in September caused an outcry among parents earlier this year who said they were too expensive.

But in a statement on the school website Principal Barry Found has told parents the decision had been put on hold until better value clothing could be found which met the school’s principles of using ethically sourced manufacturers.

He said the school had canvassed and taken on board the views of governors, parents, carers and students in considering amendments to uniform and changes to the Academy Day for implementation in September 2015.

Mr Found said: “In terms of uniform amendment, the governors have requested that we seek to match price and quality with the large chain supermarkets.

“In so doing they have also insisted that we secure supply which is ethically sourced. Currently we are unable to successfully do this.

“In matching price using suppliers other than large supermarkets, we would unacceptably compromise on quality.

“Equally manufacture would, as in the case of larger supermarket chains, inevitably be sourced from third world countries and we could not guarantee that our principles on ethical practice would be supported.

“Indeed, those supermarkets which are able to provide low cost uniform clothing do not rank highly in the latest research on high street retailers in terms of ethical manufacture.

We will instead source quality branded items at a price and quality comparable to those larger retail chains which adhere to ethical values we respect, with the intention to implement the amended expectations in September 2016.

Parent Gemma Bradbury, who started an online petition slamming future school uniform costs, said: “The Governors have ultimately have to listen to parents and understand they couldn’t afford to pay £10 a shirt as they were initially being asked.”