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Parents banned from taking pictures at Dussindale Primary School

PUBLISHED: 09:32 22 June 2011

Mariea Hobbs has been told that she can't take pictures of her daughters at school events. Picture: Colin Finch

Mariea Hobbs has been told that she can't take pictures of her daughters at school events. Picture: Colin Finch

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Parents at a greater Norwich primary school have been banned from taking pictures of their child's first nativity play or sports day.

Dussindale Primary School in Thorpe St Andrew has imposed the ban because some parents do not want their children photographed for “safeguarding” reasons.

Primary school mother Mariea Hobbs said she was very disappointed with the school’s decision because she wanted to record the important childhood memories and to share them with her husband who often works away as well as her wider family who are not able to make events.

She said the headteacher had made a big scene when she flouted the rules in December and took a picture of her daughter’s first nativity play.

“I do not want to cause a scene, but I also do not want to miss out on my daughters school memories”, she said.

Mrs Hobbs, who lives on Joyce Way with her husband three children, said: “We have sports day this July and I am worried to take my camera. My husband works away a lot and close friends and family are not always able to make these times. Schools shouldn’t make you feel like you are in the wrong.”

Her daughters seven-year-old Sydney and five-year-old Heidi are both at the school.

“We have just had a sports day and Heidi’s is in July. That will be her first one as well which will be quite nice.”

She said that she thought there should be some sort of compromise and she would be willing to sign a form saying the pictures were just for a family album.

Jane Worsdale, headteacher of Dussindale Primary School, said the ban had been imposed because there were a number of parents and carers who did not want their children to be photographed by other parents for “very good safeguarding reasons.”

“We don’t want to single out and remove the same children every time which is why we have asked parents not to take photos at school events,” she said.

“This has been a difficult decision for the school and one that has been taken after much discussion with parents and carers. The majority of parents understand and accept the reasons but we appreciate that others are disappointed and want to be able take pictures for their own personal use.

“As a school, we want to ensure parents still have memories of their children’s achievements and we are looking at how we can take our own photographs and make these available to parents – this way the school can ensure all children are treated in the same way and all parents and carers are able to have a keepsake of school events.”

The school’s education authority Norfolk County Council said they advise schools to have a policy on the safe use of images and to consult with parents but the policy is a matter for governors.

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