Waltham Forest Echo

Waltham Forest Echo

Fundraiser launched for black mum’s legal action against after-school club

The mum said her eight-year-old son was told to clean his younger sister when she soiled herself

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By Victoria Munro 05 May 2022

A fundraiser to help a local black mother pursue legal action against a Walthamstow after-school club has already raised more than £1,000 in just one day.A fundraiser to help a local black mother pursue legal action against a Walthamstow after-school club has already raised more than £1,000 in just one day.

The mum, given the alias Sarah to protect her identity, plans to take action against Greenleaf Primary School after her eight-year-old son was told to clean his younger sister when she soiled herself. The mum, given the alias Sarah to protect her identity, plans to take action against Greenleaf Primary School after her eight-year-old son was told to clean his younger sister when she soiled herself. 

She said her five-year-old girl, who has special educational needs, had faeces on her leg and no knickers or tights on, despite the freezing cold, when she arrived to pick her up in November 2020. She said her five-year-old girl, who has special educational needs, had faeces on her leg and no knickers or tights on, despite the freezing cold, when she arrived to pick her up in November 2020. 

Speaking to BBC news, she added that staff’s insistence that her son clean his little sister was an example of the “adultification” of young black children.Speaking to BBC news, she added that staff’s insistence that her son clean his little sister was an example of the “adultification” of young black children.

She said: “I don't allow my child to see his sister's genitals, how on earth do they think that is acceptable? They would never possibly ask a white child to do that."She said: “I don't allow my child to see his sister's genitals, how on earth do they think that is acceptable? They would never possibly ask a white child to do that."

The Good Law Project now hopes to raise £30,000 to pay for a leading law firm to “fight for justice for her family”, as well as to support other families in similar circumstances, and has already raised more than £1,000 in one day.The Good Law Project now hopes to raise £30,000 to pay for a leading law firm to “fight for justice for her family”, as well as to support other families in similar circumstances, and has already raised more than £1,000 in one day.

In their fundraiser, a spokesperson wrote: “Schools should be places in which every child feels safe and respected. But, for too many children from Black and minoritised communities, that is simply not the case.In their fundraiser, a spokesperson wrote: “Schools should be places in which every child feels safe and respected. But, for too many children from Black and minoritised communities, that is simply not the case.

“Thanks to Sarah’s advocacy on her children’s behalf, the school has taken some steps to improve its safeguarding. But Sarah feels that, as a Black mum, she has faced extra obstacles to making her voice heard, which have compounded her family’s trauma.“Thanks to Sarah’s advocacy on her children’s behalf, the school has taken some steps to improve its safeguarding. But Sarah feels that, as a Black mum, she has faced extra obstacles to making her voice heard, which have compounded her family’s trauma.

“That's why we are crowdfunding; so we can support not just Sarah and her children, but the so many other families from Black and minoritised communities who have similar experiences to Sarah's.”“That's why we are crowdfunding; so we can support not just Sarah and her children, but the so many other families from Black and minoritised communities who have similar experiences to Sarah's.”

In a statement, Greenleaf Primary School said: "We have apologised unreservedly to the parent of the children involved and more widely to all users of the Greenleaf After School Club.In a statement, Greenleaf Primary School said: "We have apologised unreservedly to the parent of the children involved and more widely to all users of the Greenleaf After School Club.

"This incident should not have happened, and we are determined to learn the lessons as we continue to provide our young people with the best start in life."This incident should not have happened, and we are determined to learn the lessons as we continue to provide our young people with the best start in life.

"Greenleaf Primary is a school that prides itself on treating children from all backgrounds equally.""Greenleaf Primary is a school that prides itself on treating children from all backgrounds equally."

It added that staff had been provided with further training and that the two employees involved were "removed from dealing with the affected children".It added that staff had been provided with further training and that the two employees involved were "removed from dealing with the affected children".

Donate to the Good Law Project fundraiser hereDonate to the Good Law Project fundraiser here