Schoolgirl, eight, sent home from class more than 20 times because of 'foul odour'

  • Teachers and pupils complained they could not focus on school activities
  • Education bosses said children only sent home in 'extreme' cases
  • Girl's mother insists efforts have been made to correct the problem

By Kerry Mcdermott

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An eight-year-old girl has been sent home from school 24 times since the start of the academic year because of her 'foul odour'.

Teachers and students at the school in Tennessee had complained the smell was preventing them from focusing on work, according to a suspension notice issued by the school to the girl's mother.

The director of the Washington County School District in Tennessee has said pupils are only sent home in cases where a family refuses to use proper hygiene, but the second grade pupil's mother claimed attempts had been made to correct the problem.

Mother Krystal said: 'She's been to the doctor and it's not a medical problem. She takes a bath every day, but they ask her when the last time she took a bath was and she don't remember'

Mother Krystal said: 'She's been to the doctor and it's not a medical problem. She takes a bath every day, but they ask her when the last time she took a bath was and she don't remember'

Smell: Her daughter (face muzzed out) has been suspended 24 times because of foul odour

Smell: Her daughter (face muzzed out) has been suspended 24 times because of foul odour

Krystal Hensley said the school continued to send her daughter home despite efforts to address what she described as her daughter's 'foul' odour, a Fox News report said.

'She's been to the doctor and it's not a medical problem. She takes a bath every day, but they ask her when the last time she took a bath was and she don't remember.

'They send her home at least once a month. You go to school to learn, not to be sent home,' she said.

 

The school has said the suspensions will continue unless 'corrective measures' are taken.

Ron Dykes, director of Washington County School District, who refused to comment directly on specific eight-year-old's situation, said pupils were only sent home in cases where the odour 'is so overpowering and extremely offensive to other children and adults'.

In those cases a 'home bound program is used or the child will be removed temporarily from the school until the family complies,' Mr Dykes said.

Talking about general cases, he told News Channel 11: 'Sometimes children are raised in environments that are very close to being classified as neglect and sometimes are actually placed in that category.

The director of the Washington County School District in Tennessee has said pupils are only sent home in cases where a family refuses to use proper hygiene,

Intervene: The director of the Washington County School District in Tennessee has said pupils are only sent home in cases where a family refuses to use proper hygiene

Report: The girl's mother was sent numerous letters about the problem but she kept coming back to school with a 'foul' smell

Report: The girl's mother was sent numerous letters about the problem but she kept coming back to school with a 'foul' smell

'When children appear to be dirty or have excessive body odor generally the teacher will have a conference with the child or ask the nurse or guidance counselor to discuss the issue with the parent to determine the possible cause.

'There are rare instances when a medical problem is involved, but more often than not it is simply poor hygiene and the child is living in troubling conditions.

'Perhaps the electricity or water service has been terminated for non payment of bills. There are times when we involve DCS, but generally the conversations with the parents will discover there is a need to assist with finding a funding source or agency that can help the family thorough social services.'

 

The comments below have been moderated in advance.

There is a lot of compassion for that poor child here on this site......why not in her school???? I can't believe the way she was treated....she's only eight for crying out loud. Where is Social Services??? This child is a victim and needs someone to stand up for her and help her. And those of you here who are using this unfortunate child to make your stupid political comments.......shame on you.

Click to rate     Rating   73

The smell could also be dirty clothes or sleeping with animals. Some children need deodorant at a very early age. Mom needs to take this problem seriously. - Jeanette, Bartlett, 3/4/2013 21:18 --------- I agree. My own daughter has had to wear deodorant since the age of 6, due to strong underarm odor. She bathed daily, and had regular medical attention, so we knew nothing was wrong with her. The deodorant stopped the smell. Even now, as an adult, she often keeps a stick of deodorant in her purse, just in case. Some people seem to develop body odor earlier, and/or have one that is naturally strong.

Click to rate     Rating   55

Yep... there has always been the case of the "smelly kid" - poor things. It must be very embarrasing for them. I'm sure they dont like smelling bad. Sometimes, water, if it is from a well, can smell of sulphur or other minerals and the stench is disgusting. Usually a water filter system is installed to eliminate all that - but this family does not look like they can afford much. I hope someone is able to sort it out soon for her sake. It cant be nice to be sent home from school, because you smell.

Click to rate     Rating   41

Mom looks like she's missing all her teeth. Not a good sign in terms of hygiene standards in that household.

Click to rate     Rating   80

This is sad, and I feel so bad for that little girl who probably doesn't have any control over the situation, or know any better. My son is 8 and he would be devastated and so embarrassed if this happened to him. The saddest thing is that this is going to follow her throughout school, she'll always be pegged as "the stinky kid". As if growing up these days isn't hard enough already.

Click to rate     Rating   61

They should perhaps show her some compassion and help her out, not further embarrass her. Poor kid.

Click to rate     Rating   109

Jesus, can't the school just take her in?! Take her away for the week for god sakes! Let her sleep, eat wash and study at the school during the week. Her mother obviously cannot function properly

Click to rate     Rating   48

The smell could also be dirty clothes or sleeping with animals. Some children need deodorant at a very early age. Mom needs to take this problem seriously.

Click to rate     Rating   72

Um, not to be mean, but one look at that mother and it's obvious where the problem lies...

Click to rate     Rating   110

People who don't understand laundry don't know that you have to take out WASHED clothes and put them into the dryer. They can't sit for three or four days - ick!

Click to rate     Rating   57

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