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Headteacher apologises for excluding 'adult' pupil

25/01/2011 Joanna
A headteacher has today apologised for excluding a 14-year-old pupil that he thought was an adult.

Nigel Poole, headteacher at Petersfield school in Petersfield, Hampshire was uncertain of Prince Somerfield's age and so sent the Malawi-born student home.

At first glance, Prince, who is 5ft 8in (1.72m), weighs 10 stone (63.5kg) and wears an outsized uniform does not resemble an average teenager his age but after his parents, David and Ennettie, submitted his Malawian birth certificate showing he was born in 1996, the school invited him back.

Mr Poole formally apologised for the mistake and said that he was happy that all necessary checks had been carried out and that Prince could return to the school.

A school spokeswoman for the school, which specialises in the performing arts, said: "Following extensive checks with the relevant authorities, the Summerfield family have been able to prove with complete authenticity that Prince is 14 and should be at secondary school."
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