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Schoolgirl suspended for cancer charity fundraiser.

Last Saturday, 15 year old Emily Pridham shaved all of her hair off to raise money for cancer research charities as her father is currently suffering from Leukaemia.

Yesterday, she was suspended from her school, Mt Alvernia College, and was told that her suspension would not end until all of her hair grows back.

Emily's mother spoke to ABC radio; "I understand that school rules have to be abided by. However, I've gone through the school rules and the uniform policy and nowhere does it say that a girl cannot shave her head," Ms Pridham said.

The school says that her suspension was not just about the head shaving, but won't admit to what the other issues are.

Emily's mother said that the only other run-ins Emily has had with the school board was nail polish wearing and that she swore in the presence of a teacher.


Okay, so ultimately, I can see that the school is fairly strict on student presentation and uniform. This is fine as hundreds of other schools probably have the exact same rules. Although, there should be some exceptions to these rules. Raising money for cancer research is one.

School's have uniforms and make a big deal about it because if all the students are dressed immaculately and have perfect hair, nails etc, then the school's image/profile is raised. The way I see it is that, if anything, one girl with a shaved head is actually improving the school's image because it shows what amazing and caring young people are out there these days. It sort of gives the youth of today a good name.

I'd also like to add, the school has allegedly said that Emily cannot return until her hair has grown back. Do they realise how long that will take?! Even if she grows it into a short bob cut, it will still take about 3 months.

I really don't think a suspension was warranted over a shaved head that was shaved to do good for society. But, then again, there's always more to the story than what the media report, or even than what the media have been told so perhaps there are other reasons for her suspension. Only time will tell.

Based on the information that has been reported in the media, what do you guys think? Is shaving your head for cancer research worthy of a suspension?


Kez said...

Like you say, there's always more to the story...

But based on what you've blogged (according to the media), I would say that's stupid. Especially as it is her own father that she's doing it for. However, I do know what it's like to go to a strict school with big emphasis on perfect uniform and I guess they're scared of the "slippery slope" effect. However, it would be easy to make a compassionate exception.

I think for a young, good looking girl to be brave enough to shave her head for a cause she obviously feels passionate about, she is showing not only compassion for others but is showing virtues that go past vanity and appearance.

Again, may I reiterate, I am only commenting on what has been reported. For all I know, she's an absolute rat bag!
Regardless, she's obviously got some tough things going on in her life so some slack should be cut or some compassionate dealing with the situation.

Death Wears Diamond Jewellery said...

i got chills looking at those photos. her hair is gorgeous! she is such a pretty thing, and so typical- nail polish at school, oh god, how many times did that happen to me?

but mostly, what a freaking brave young woman! holy crap. i want to hug her right now.

and yes, from what the media has reported, it is NOT a cause for suspension. it would be, imho, if she shaved her head out of rebellion. but she didn't.

what if she had cancer? and the chemo made all her hair fell out??? would she be suspended till it grew back or be forced to wear a wig?

insanity. and it is something i could see my high school doing. except i dont get how a 15 year old girl who is brave enough to shave her head for cancer gives off a bad image.

makes me angry!

Audrey said...

This is crap! The said "until her hair grows back", but the didn't specify anything, to technically, if that is the length of her hair in the picture after the first, where she is holding the baby- she can go back to school now. If they continue with her suspencion, her parents then can file civil rights suit. But I don't believe in suing, people do it to much these days. I would say spin it to the media, she probably gain more exposure for her cause this way.

I came to your blog through "Five Foot Nothing" :)

Katie said...

THIS IS SO HORRIBLE! Based on what has been reported. Poor girl.. At least she is getting additional publicity though I'm all for publicity for cancer research. I do not think she should be suspended the school should be proud of her.

Corrine/Frock And Roll said...

That's such a shame - it's obviously a very important and personal cause for her, so the fact that she's being punished because of it is l-a-m-e.

Joanne said...

I think that's absolutely's just plain nuts. :/ What that girl did was amazing. She is so gorgeous too, and has a truely amazing heart to do that for her Dad.

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry to everyone who reads this and thinks of me as a bitch, but anyone who goes the Mount Alvernia would understand the background of emily's situation and as a previous student, and a fellow pupil of emily i know the school for the past 3 years emily has been there they have been extremely supportive and accomodating to emilys situation. I am not saying it was appropriate to suspend her, but then again the way the situation was handled is ridiculous. I know she did a good thing for her dad, but she really could have sorted it out with the school personally rather than drag the media into it and cause alot of bad press for the school, without even recognising the good things the school did for her during the past three years.

Aquarius74 said...

From what I understand Emily and her parents did try to sort the problem out with the school's hierarchy before going to the media. Letters were written, telephone calls were made and parental visits to the school all came to nought.
We understand that the majority of the STUDENTS at the school are very supportive of Emily. It is extremely upsetting though that the school's HIERARCHY have ruined their record of past support of Emily through this absurd action.
We must continue to support Emily and her family. It is incredible what love can do in such situations.