Great Britain

Mum, 34, furious after three school staff mock daughter’s throat condition on Facebook Live in accidental recording

A FUMING mum has blasted a school after members of staff cruelly joked about her disabled six-year-old daughter's condition on Facebook Live.

Little Willow Musgrave, from Northamptonshire, has a life-saving tracheostomy in her throat to help her breathe - which three teaching staff were heard mocking.

The youngster - who has complex health needs which require 24-hour care - has had a tracheostomy since the age of four months after being born 16 weeks premature, and if the tube is out for more than 15 minutes it could be fatal.

Three women who work at the St Andrew's CofE Primary School in Kettering were heard hooting with laughter when one said the medical tube "made them feel sick" while another said it "looked really horrible".

But unknown to the teaching staff, their entire chat was broadcast on Facebook Live on Saturday and was watched by more than 12,000 people.

They were using Facebook Live before a school trip but one of them accidentally picked up their conversation about Willow.

In the clip, they discussed how teachers are asked to provide medical support for children when one was heard saying: "The mask change for Willow. The mask fitting, it's awful."

Talking about helping with her tracheostomy, one said: "It makes me feel queasy. I couldn't do it."

Another said: "I don't like even looking at it."

One replied: "No I don't. I know that's really horrible."

Towards the end of the conversation, laughter followed when one said: "You didn't come into this to be changing tracheostomies."

Willow's outraged mum Becky Wardiell, 34, is now taking legal action against the school, and the three staff members have not returned to the school since the incident after an investigation was launched into their comments.

Becky, who has four children, said: "Willow can't defend herself. It's not her fault she has a tracheostomy. It's a life or death situation for her.

"My friend saw it on Facebook and was so outraged she sent me the link. I was so shocked and angry. I think I had every emotion going.

'NASTY'

"For three adults to stand there and speak about Willow like that is nasty. Willow is the prettiest, happiest little girl.

"People who are in a position where they care for children shouldn't talk about her like that just because she has a disability."

The school is part of the Peterborough Diocese Academy Trust, and a spokesperson said: "Every child who we are able to support from an educational, health and wellbeing perspective is very welcome in our community - irrespective of any challenges they may be facing.

"Clearly there are elements of this conversation that should not have taken place, and the fact that the discussion was accidentally shared to a wider audience is also deeply regrettable.

"We have apologised to the family concerned, and we will be addressing this in greater depth with the staff members concerned.

"We will also look at what additional training we can provide to help address any barriers about meeting the medical needs of our pupils."


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