What kind of racist bullshit is this?! A charter school in Tulsa, Oklahoma, sent a seven-year-old Black girl named Tiana Parker home from school because her dreadlocks were considered “unacceptable.”
But dreads aren’t the only hairstyle that’s not A-OK with Deborah Brown Community School: according to Raw Story, the school policy states that “hairstyles such as dreadlocks, afros, mohawks, and other faddish styles are unacceptable.”
You hear that everyone? Wearing your hair in natural-looking Afros or in dreads are fads, just like dying it bright green with Manic Panic! News station KOKI added that the school doesn’t permit certain hairstyles because it strives for a “respectful and serious atmosphere.” Wearing your hair chemically straightened (health concerns be damned) will be much more Caucasian-looking and therefore more serious!
Fortunately, Tiana now attends a different school which is just fine with her locks. Meanwhile, Tiana has gotten her very first lesson in the racialized policing of her Black hair. School dress codes that apply equally to all are perfectly legitimate; this one stigmatizes certain kids. This policy is wrong and needs to be changed.
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[Image of little girl via Shutterstock]