Josie Webster is a disabled student at Engadine high, whose mother says was not invited to her high school formal. Her outraged mother created this video as a response, which quickly went viral.
Engadine High has responded to the Josie Webster story by releasing the following statement. Written by the school’s principal it suggests a different turn on events.
Dear Parents and Carers,
It may have come to your attention that there has been a significant amount of adverse social media regarding a Year 10 end of year function that was held last week. The claims that have been made have caused significant distress to students and staff.
Out of respect for our students and parents I would like to make a number of clear statements:
• Whilst the school had no role to play in the organisation of the event, we did allow notes to be distributed at school.
• Year 10 students participated in a privately organised and parent-run end of year event.
• These notes were distributed during roll call on three separate occasions. The school has been assured by other Year 10 parents of the Support Unit that they received the notes. The event also had its own Facebook page which was publicly available.
• The organising parents acted in good faith and actively sought to include all students from Year 10 and there was never any intention to exclude students from the event. I also understand that the organisers have offered sincere apologies to the parent who raised the complaint
• Engadine High School ceased holding and organising school-sponsored Year 10 Formals in 2012 in response to the reality that the majority of students return to school and complete their HSC.
• The school was open to any parent enquiry throughout the year in relation to whether a formal would be held.
As an initiative of the parent organising committee, it was decided to raise funds for the Engadine High School Support Unit at the event. This was a demonstration of goodwill and a reflection of the generosity always so evident from our school community.