Published: 10:44, 20 October 2020
| Updated: 13:09, 20 October 2020
An outraged mother has accused a secondary school of putting children’s health at risk after dozens of pupils were made to eat their lunches outside.
Children from Years 8 and 11 at Herne Bay High were made to have meals under a canopy, while others were able to remain indoors.
Furious mum Michelle Williams, from Hampton, says she learned of this when her 12-year-old son Callum returned home sopping wet last week.
“There was really bad rain and Callum came home soaked,” she said.
“They were putting the children’s health at risk and there were other children eating in classrooms – so they clearly could be indoors.
“If they got a chest infection, we would then have had to get tests and it would affect the parents as well as they would have had to wait for the results of the Covid tests also.
“They’ve already had so much time off that any more would disadvantage them.”
Ms Williams says she was told by teachers that the measure was introduced to prevent the spread of Covid-19, as there was insufficient space inside for everyone to have their meals.
The school stresses pupils were sat underneath “purpose-built canopies”.
But Ms Williams says that it was like sitting under “a roof with no walls” and that it offered the youngsters little protection from the elements while they were eating.
“The wind would blow the rain in and soak the kids,” she explained. “They were having to eat their lunch outside on wet chairs and tables.
“Then they would have to go in and spend the rest of the day in their wet uniforms.”
Ms Williams says she was going to send a letter co-signed by as many as 40 parents into the school demanding the policy be changed.
But following backlash online last Tuesday, bosses from Herne Bay High told parents that each year group will have a designated indoor area, where they will be able to eat their lunches.
A spokesman for the school told KentOnline: “The purpose-built canopied areas have been utilised while the weather has been fine alongside internal spaces.
“However, as the weather appears to be becoming increasingly inclement, we will be using more indoor spaces for students to eat their lunch.”