A TOP Hampshire school is at the centre of a uniform row over pupils’ underwear.
Furious parents say their children are being told what colour pants and bras to wear as part of strict new rules introduced at Kings School in Winchester.
Some suggested that members of staff were even checking to see if pupils were complying – a claim strongly denied by the school.
Teachers have dismissed claims they have introduced a new policy governing underwear, saying they simply gave pupils guidance on what was appropriate to wear However, parents have branded the move ridiculous and say dictating what underwear youngsters must wear is intrusive.
They say boys have been told they can only wear white or black underpants, and if their pants are showing above their trousers, as is the current fashion, they will be asked to put a belt on.
Meanwhile girls have been told they should only wear white, unpadded bras underneath blouses.
“I think it’s disgraceful, I just don’t understand a lot of what Kings’ do,” said Leanne Hosking, who has three children aged 14, 13 and 11 – at the Romsey Road site. “The things that should be priority are not, it’s the petty things that they concentrate on.
“It causes a lot of problems, especially with my older girl.
She does not like male teachers turning her around and checking her bra.”
Another parent, Stuart Gander, who has a 15-year-old and 13-year-old daughter at the school, said: “The children feel it’s slightly intrusive if they’re asked to show they’re bra straps so teachers can see what colour it is. I would not do that to someone in my workplace.”
But Susan Southall, assistant head teacher at Kings’, insisted there were no rules governing underwear. She said they had simply held an assembly with Year 10 pupils about what was appropriate to wear.
She said: “Some of the parents are buying extremely thin blouses so we have said think carefully about what you’re wearing.
“Some of the blouses are incredibly thin and to save the girls embarrassment we helped them along with what is appropriate to wear.We suggested black bras were not appropriate.”
“No male staff members have been asked to check underwear, not even female staff would have. It would be inappropriate.”
Ms Southall added boys at the school had not been told what underwear to put on; she said it had been suggested that they just wear trousers on their hips, rather than below.
The latest dispute comes just a week after 13-year-old Kirby Moore was suspended from lessons at Kings’ for dying her hair dark brown.