Should fake nails prevent a student from graduating?
An Australian high school barred up to 70 students from graduating, pointing the finger at the students' fake nails.
Students from Mackellar Girls Campus on the northern beaches were banned from entering the main hall where the Year 10 graduation ceremony took place.
Some students were eventually allowed back into the hall, but they were made to sit in the back and did not have their names read out at the ceremony. One student was still denied inclusion despite trimming her nails in haste, according to News.com.au.
A student who was interviewed about the incident said she had gotten her nails done for a formal four days before her graduation ceremony. The student said she was also attending another formal the day after their graduation, so it didn't make sense for her to get her fake nails removed.
Parents of the children expressed their frustration at the school administration and questioned why some of the teachers were allowed to wear bright red nails, yet the short, naturally-colored acrylics of the students were criticized.
“There were so many parents who had taken time off work to attend, to sit there in the audience and not only not see their daughters get their awards, but their names were not even recognised. Absolutely disgusting behaviour for a publicly funded and run local government school," a parent said.
A spokesperson for the Department stood by the school’s decision to ban the students.
“We understand some students and parents are upset by the decision of the school, however all Mackellar Girls students and parents were given written and verbal advice on the expectations around uniform and behavior on multiple occasions since the start of the school year,” they said. “This included specific advice to students and parents that acrylic nails were not acceptable at school and in particular for the Year 10 assembly.”