A parent has accused a school of failing her daughter after she received a rejection letter confusing her medical conditions with learning disabilities.

When it came for Rebecca Hunswick's daughter to apply to secondary school, it made sense for the Alderton Junior School pupil to look towards the nearby Debden Park High School.

She applied with details of her medical conditions epilepsy and alopecia, two physical ailments which do not impair her ability to learn.

Ms Hunswick and her daughter were shocked when they received a lengthy letter in response providing many reasons why the girl could not be taught at Debden Park.

Part of the letter reads: "I fear that our large classroom sizes will stagnate her progress, especially in maths and English, where it is clear that she needs specialised 1-1 support.

"Not only do we not have the capacity to deliver this, we do not have maths and English classes that will deliver the work at a speed that is suitable for her, nor do we have a specialist available to support, plan and deliver these separate sessions."

It goes on to explain how "dire" staff shortages have made small group sessions, dyslexic classes and nurture groups "impossible."

The letter also warns that teachers would have to stop moving around in otherwise "noisy" and "interactive" classes to cater for the girl, something that would prove "detrimental" to the other pupils.

The double sided letter sent in January completely misses the fact that the girl has physical ailments rather than learning difficulties, rendering almost all of its points completely irrelevant.

Ms Hunswick said: "The letter is offensive and it’s content extremely concerning.

"It states that the school does not have the staff to train a student with Alopecia Totalis.

"This is a medical condition of my daughter and it is not a Special Educational Need and Disability.

"This is just one example of the schools incompetencies as they are listed in the correspondence."

She also accused the school of failing to lawfully and properly spend the £72,000 it receives each year for pupils with learning difficulties.

Helen Gascoyne, headteacher at Debden Park School, said: "We pride ourselves on our inclusive approach to education, and always carefully review the support required for each special education needs student before they join the school.

"We inform parents about how well we are able to meet their child’s needs so they can make a fully informed choice about which is the best school for their child.

“In this case, there were errors in the letter sent to a prospective parent that the Trust and school has apologised for.

"There are currently 24 pupils with Educational Health Care Plans (EHCP) at Debden Park.

"For each pupil with an EHCP, the school receives additional funding to help meet these needs, and the amount of funding per pupil varies significantly."