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Homewood School in Tenterden sends second letter to parents urging pupils not to strike and to stop 'poor behaviour'

Staff at Kent's largest secondary school have written to parents for a second time urging them to encourage children not take part in TikTok-inspired protests.

It comes as police were called to Homewood School in Tenterden on Monday when a rally was sparked by various issues – including toilets being closed during lessons, female teachers allegedly going into male changing rooms, and the length of skirts.

Homewood School and Sixth Form in Tenterden
Homewood School and Sixth Form in Tenterden

After telling parents to advise their children against such "totally unacceptable and dangerous" protests on Friday, another letter has now been sent out after posts on TikTok suggested another protest was planned for today.

The letter said staff want to "get back to teaching" and stop monitoring corridors for "poor behaviour".

But one mum from Bethersden, who took her daughter out of the school for a number of concerns, says this is a double standard as teachers are set to strike tomorrow.

"The children are protesting because they haven’t got a voice," said mum Sharon March.

"I think children are in their right to be protesting, obviously you are going to have children that take it to the extreme, but the school knew this was going to happen, and that protests would be going on, so they should have managed it better.

Officers attended after the protest broke out
Officers attended after the protest broke out

"When my daughter was at the school she just didn't want to go in because the toilet rules were awful.

"It's a double standard especially when teachers are planning to strike tomorrow."

Pupils have been inspired to protest following similar incidents across the country that have been shared on social media platform TikTok.

The letter sent home last night, seen by KentOnline said: "We are saddened to inform you that there have been posts on TikTok tonight stating that there will be further disruption in school tomorrow.

"We know that the vast majority of you will be appalled by this, as are all members of staff who work at Homewood School.

Police were called to Homewood School on Monday
Police were called to Homewood School on Monday

"As staff, we are there to educate students and give them the opportunities in life to achieve their potential.

"Schools such as ours have rules and high expectations because we care about our students' long-term futures and immediate well-being not because we are actively working against our children and their families.

"Unfortunately, these disruptions are preventing many of us from our core purpose of education.

"It must be stressed that the aforementioned behaviour is only being carried out by a very small number of children, who have been duly sanctioned.

"The vast majority of our students are working hard in their lessons and are trying to enjoy their time in school.

"We would therefore ask that you speak to your child if they are involved and ensure that this poor behaviour stops now."

"A great many of these hard-working children have expressed their frustrations at this disruptive minority.

"The reasons for the 'protests' have been listened to, and many senior staff have made appointments to meet with students over the next few days to listen to these in person.

"Students can also put their thoughts in writing to their head of community or to Mr Single, as Principal, should they still feel that they have something constructive to offer.

"We intend to put together a forum of staff and students who are able to represent the views of the student body.

"All members of staff at Homewood now want to return to the profession we enjoy and not be asked to monitor corridors and outside spaces for gatherings of students choosing to cause unrest.

"We would therefore ask that you speak to your child if they are involved and ensure that this poor behaviour stops now."

Police were also called to the school last month after a Year 9 pupil suffered two 15mm-deep puncture wounds to the back of her leg during a "terrifying" break-time attack.

Homewood School has been approached for comment.

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