A mother has lashed out at a school after it banned her sons from the playground because of an “extreme” haircut.

Alfiee-Joe and Deklyn Barke, who are nine and eight respectively, have been told they are unable to go outside for breaks and lunchtime at Silver End Academy until their hair has grown back.

The two boys were taken to the barbers at the weekend where they both had a short-back-and-sides with a parting.

But the style has been deemed too extreme by school bosses, who informed the boy's mum Claire Mitchell on Monday that they would both be kept off the playground until further notice.

Maldon and Burnham Standard:

Miss Mitchell said: "They rang me about Alfiee on Monday to say his haircut was too extreme and that they would be keeping him in at breaks.

"They hadn't even noticed Deklyn's hair until I said he had the same.

"It’s not fair on them because they are being cooped up inside for six hours each day and deprived of some fun on the playground just because of their hair.

"I wouldn’t call a parting extreme. There have been quite a few parents on Facebook saying they have children at the school with the same style."

Miss Mitchell says the ruling by the school has upset both her sons, who she fears may not be able to go back onto the playground for another four to six weeks.

She says her sons' haircuts are no different to normal and there have been no issues in the past with Silver End Academy, or at their previous school, Iceni Academy in Colchester.

Maldon and Burnham Standard:

She added: “Alfiee struggles with anxiety so this has only made things worse. And Dekyln has been heartbroken by the whole thing. He’s devastated because he never gets in trouble and is like the model student. But now I’m struggling to get him into school in the mornings."

Executive headteacher Simon Webb has defended the disciplinary action taken by the school and insists the haircuts are in breach of rules which all parents agree to when sending their children to the academy.

He added: "Any new pupils coming to the academy has to consider our home school agreement.

"It very clearly recommends what is appropriate for uniform and dress code which has been carefully considered for the children's' benefit.

"Each parent signs the home school agreement which means they have agreed to the terms and in this case, the parent has signed it.

"We believe the haircuts are not appropriate and the consequences of that is the boys will be off the playground - not excluded - until their hair has grown back.

He added: "The haircuts are strikingly different to a normal one. There aren't any other children at the school who's hair is as different.

"The reason this has happened is because the parents have chosen this haircut for these boys and they had decided not to honour the agreement they signed.

"It's about setting standards which is very important for our school."