A council is facing a backlash after telling parents to be “pushy” and send their ill children to school.
An East Sussex County Council (ESCC) campaign says: “Putting your foot down isn’t always easy but 100% attendance should be every parent’s goal.
“Unless there’s a genuine reason for your child to be absent, be a pushy parent and get them to school.”
The campaign has been described by parents on social media as “outrageous, patronising and utterly misjudged”.
The council posted on its website: “A minor cough, cold, sore throat, headache, or just feeling tired doesn’t always mean a day off school. The school will send your child home if they think they are struggling.”
There are already 175 non-school days a year and children will “miss vital hours of learning” if they do not attend school every day, the authority adds.
Anett Poscai responded on Facebook: “I love this approach. Especially when mums bringing their feverish, sick child in and asking teachers to administer the medication to make kids push through the day.”
Jemima Keys posted: “Seriously, who approved this campaign? I saw this on the side of a bus and honestly could not believe it…Could you be any more hostile and unapproachable ESCC?”
Meanwhile, Rowan Huggins said on Facebook: “This is an outrageous, patronising and utterly misjudged campaign.”
In November 2017, a campaign by the same council telling parents to send children to school if they have colds prompted more than 6,500 signatures to a petition against its “aggressive, condescending and insulting” message.