A 16-year-old Hastings schoolboy is challenging "the lawfulness of [his] suspension" for long hair and taking the case to the High Court on Monday.

Lucan Battison was suspended from St John's College after the school required him to cut his hair as per the school's policy.

The teenager made headlines in April when he was awarded a bravery medal by Napier Mayor Bill Dalton after helping to rescue two women caught in a rip off Waipatiki Beach in January 2013.

Lucan said at the time he was not a hero and others who played even a lesser part in rescuing Analisa Tipu, 21, and Leilani Wong, 18, also deserved a medal.


His family lives at the beachside community, north of Napier.

The family could not be contacted yesterday regarding the High Court case, after his father, Troy Battison, sought a judicial review to the college's decision to suspend Lucan.

However, the family's lawyer, Jol Bates, told Hawke's Bay Today an "urgent application" had been made to hear the case as soon as possible.

"There has been a challenge to the lawfulness of the suspension."

He would not go into further detail about the case and said the family would not be making comment while the matter was before the court.

However, Mr Bates said the hearing would be held in the High Court at Wellington on Monday and explained the case was not being heard in Napier because the High Court there was already in use.

He said the 16-year-old's father had made the submission on behalf of his son because Lucan was considered a minor by the courts.

St John's principal Paul Melloy told Hawke's Bay Today it was unfortunate the issue had resulted in legal action but the school stood by its actions.


He said the school policy on their students' hair was for it to be "short, tidy and of natural colour".

The principal took up his role as the head of St John's College only last month, after previously working at Auckland's Sacred Heart College.

It is understood Mr Melloy and the St John's College board of trustees will defend their action to suspend Lucan.