Ilkeston schoolgirl put in isolation after hair dye error

Holly Amber, who has been put in isolation for the colour of her hair.
Holly Amber, who has been put in isolation for the colour of her hair.

A schoolgirl who has suffered from depression and severe back pain has been put in isolation at Ilkeston Ormiston Academy - because her hair colour is too extreme.

Holly Amber, 14, faces spending all her time in isolation until the end of term after staff said they would not teach her with her hair being purple.

But the move has left Holly’s mum Sara fuming - and says her daughter’s hair only turned that colour by mistake when dying it.

She told the ‘Tiser: ”I’m furious and disgusted at the way my daughter has been treated.

“It’s her education at the end of the day that has been put at risk because of her hair colour.”

Sara says she dyed Holly’s hair at home as a treat - but did not realise quite how bright the colour would be.

She immediately dashed to the hairdressers but they said they could not recolour the hair for eight to 12 weeks.

It meant Holly would still be in isolation when the summer holidays finish in September.

Said Sara: “it’s so frustrating because it’s not as if I did it on purpose and now I can’t do anything to correct it.”

Sara also says that Holly’s stint in isolation could also be damaging for her health.

“She’s sitting in a chair all day and she’s not allowed to move around which means she’s experiencing a lot of pain in her back - it’s so unfair especially when Holly tells me when there are pupils at the school with bright red hair who get away with it.”

Ormiston Ilkeston Enterprise Academy was formed in September 2013 from the merger of the former Ormiston Enterprise Academy with Ormiston Ilkeston Academy.

A spokesman said that despite the ‘mistake’ being an innocent one, the academy said it stands by its decision to isolate Holly.

Said the spokesman: “We set high standards in all aspects of school life, including academic work and behaviour, and have a clear uniform policy. In common with many other schools, this states that bright, unnatural hair colours are unacceptable, and aims to prepare young people for the working world. The school has been informed that the hair colour was a mistake, which is unfortunate, but we must uphold our high standards.

“Parents and students have been reminded of the policy recently, as well as the outcome if it is not adhered to. This student was therefore placed in isolation, with a full programme of class work, in accordance with the policy and as would be the case with any student.”