Tesco has been forced to deny that it was discriminating against state school students at one of its outlets in Edinburgh.
The supermarket has come under attack for reportedly forcing children from Boroughmuir high school, a state school in the city, to stand behind a barrier and only allow the children inside in small groups. However, students from the neighbouring George Watson's College were seen walking into the shop without queuing.
Neil Pollock, a professor at Edinburgh university, told the Guardian that his son - a pupil at Boroughmuir - felt "frustrated" watching the privately-educated children literally getting one step ahead of him.
"Tesco also 'police' the door in that they have a person there making sure they queue," Pollock said. "[The children] don't want to get into trouble, or to present their school in a bad light, but they just think it is unfair."
@Tesco makes one set of school kids queue outside, whilst another school walks in. One is state, the other private. Which one has to queue?— Neil Pollock (@neilpollock) November 15, 2016
One former pupil, who wished to remain anonymous, told the Guardian: “My friend goes [to George Watson’s college] and, when I spoke to him about it, he said he remembers feeling so bizarre just walking in. Didn’t know whether to join the queue or not but the security said no you just go straight in.”
Tesco has hit back at the reports, saying: "This is completely untrue - there has never been any discrimination between state and private school children at this store."