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Twenty Pupils Banned From Prom
Twenty senior pupils from Calderglen High have been excluded from their senior prom after an end of year prank went too far.
South Lanarkshire Council said the school leavers caused "serious" damage to school property on their last day of school, putting themselves and their fellow pupils and staff in danger. They were also accused of drinking alcohol on school grounds.
Social media erupted over the school’s punishment of the sixth year pupils with angry parents claiming the whole situation had been mishandled by staff.
One mum even set up a Facebook page calling for ‘amnesty for the Calderglen 20’.
Susan Martin, whose daughter was excluded, told the News: "Forty pupils were called into school right at exam time, my daughter being one of them and interrogated like criminals and a lot of these teenagers felt they were being pressured into telling them who was involved naming names etc and in tears by the end of it!
"It came down to 20 people being excluded from prom on nothing more than hearsay. My daughter was excluded because another pupil reported seeing her drinking alcohol which is not true. When I challenged them about having no hard evidence they didn't want to know and said she would need someone to come forward to back up her story which she did and they are still excluding her.
"There is lots of stories like this about the way it has all been handled but when it comes down to it what should be a memorable end to their school years these 20 teenagers have been made to feel like criminals and their parents are now severely out of pocket with outfits etc.
"It is more about the way the whole thing was handled from the start, the kids had already been punished as they had paid for food and drinks for a party in school the day it happened but this was cancelled and none of them got a refund.
"It has caused outrage amongst the parents - we feel the punishment is too harsh."
However the school and local authority maintain that the end of term “high jinks” – which involved eggs, flour and washing up liquid – was marred by much more serious behaviour and stood by their decision to exclude 20 of the 180 senior pupils from attending the prom at the Bothwell Bridge Hotel.
Wilma Bain, head of education, at South Lanarkshire Council, said: “We recognise the views being expressed via social media, however the decision taken by the school was after careful investigation into incidents of disruptive behaviour by some pupils.
“The totally unacceptable behaviour can certainly not be classed as end of term high jinks. Pupils were allegedly drinking alcohol in the school. Some pupils carried out serious damage to property and put themselves, fellow pupils and staff in danger by blocking off fire doors and locking school gates. The prom is something that we know pupils and staff look forward to as they prepare to leave school and is a celebratory occasion.
“However, the criteria for attending is to act responsibly and behave in an appropriate manner during the school year. Unfortunately, on this occasion some pupils let themselves down and are now facing the consequences of their actions.
“The Prom is an event that takes place outwith school, therefore, it is even more important that we have confidence in the standards we set for responsible behaviour are adhered too at all times.”