A mother with a daughter with cystic fibrosis has called for an end to rewards for children with 100 per cent attendance at school.
Ana Jones, 27, from East Witton, said the practice is unfair on those children who are unable to attend school every day for health reasons.
Ana’s seven-year-old daughter Darcie has cystic fibrosis meaning every day she takes 40 pills, has two sessions of airway clearance physiotherapy and has to take nebulised medications.
She also has to attend regular medical appointments.
So far this term her attendance is at 66 per cent.
Ana said many schools rewarded children for high and full attendance with certificates, treats and trips away.
She said she did not blame schools as it was Government policy, however she has called for the practice to stop.
Ana said: “It’s discrimination as Darcie is being set up to fail immediately.
“She can never achieve 100 per cent attendance. We shouldn’t be rewarding this anyway as it encourages parents to send their kids into school when they aren’t well enough and if Darcie even catches a cold it can become very serious and cause scarring in her lungs.
“I’m challenging the council and Government to stop rewarding healthy kids for coming to school and to stop demoralising and discriminating against kids who simply are too I’ll to attend all the time.”
She added: “All our precious kids need encouraging and rewarding. However there are other ways than via attendance.
“Even healthy kids get sick and can’t manage 100 per cent so this system is inappropriate for all.”
Ana has raised the issue with North Yorkshire County Council and Richmond MP Rishi Sunak.
The MP’s office said Mr Sunak had discussed Ana’s concerns with Schools Minister Nick Gibb.
She has launched a petition calling for the rewards to stop which has so far been signed by almost 1,000 people.
To sign the petition click here.