6-Year-Old Suspended From School Until Mom Cuts His Hair

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long hairReady to get mad? A 6-year-old boy has been given in-school suspension by his Texas school that administrators say will be in effect until his mom cuts his long hair. Because really, folks, why bother educating a kid with long hair? Don't you know he's already doomed?

Yes, oh Internet, that was sarcasm. I happen to think JoJo Johnson looks absolutely darling with his long blond hair. And I'm appalled at the message this school district is sending to its students.

They're telling kids that education is not nearly as important as one's looks. 

Because really, that's what the hair debacle is all about, isn't it? The district officials have decided that they don't approve of the look of little boys with hair that stretches beyond the bottom of the earlobe. And for that, they're willing to sacrifice a little boy's classroom time.

Congrats to the Frenship Independent School District and Oak Ridge Elementary School both. You've just told every child in your district that it's best to take the superficial path in life.

And we wonder why we have a bullying problem in America? When school officials are so eager to focus on looks, they foster a community where the kids will do the same.

And before you say JoJo's mom is also making this about looks by refusing to bow to the district, it bears noting that this little guy's long hair isn't just a style choice. He is of Native American descent, and it is a Cherokee tradition for males not to cut their hair. Technically, his mom says, that makes the choice a protected right.

The law seems to be on her side, and I'm hoping she'll win. But frankly, she shouldn't need a religious excuse to protect her son's hair.

School districts need to be led by people who care more about the important things -- you know, like educating kids (!) -- than issues as shallow as the length of one's hair.

What do you make of the message that's being sent by punishing this kid with time out of the classroom?


Image via Rochelle, just Rochelle/Flickr

elementary school, education


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Choco... Chocodoxies

This is so silly, and harmful. The idea that gender roles, at the age of six, outrank an education are exactly what is wrong with our educational system in the United States! Focus on what matters! His hair is not distracting others, or himself, from classroom activities.  I could see this fight if he had purple hair, or were playing with it to the detriment of his own learning abilities, but just for looks? Oh, c'mon. 

lilpu... lilpunk77

My son is 5 and has hair just like this. It's times like this that I am so glad we home school! The poor kid has to have an in school suspension instead of participating in class. unbelievable!

lulou lulou

I think they'll win too, and this will be a good learning momement for the kid on overcoming adversity, just look at Clay Matthews.

Rhond... RhondaVeggie

Saying his great grandmother is half Cherokee without being able to produce documentation is just an excuse. Mommy needs to accept that her child is not a girl.

CPN322 CPN322

Not a mom yet and I really hate the snowflake comment though I also find it amusing. Children could easily be compared to snowflakes as no two are absolutely the same. And no, NO "snowflake" should have to cut their hair because authoritie figures simply don't like it. Stop being sheep and blindly following stupid rules. His hair is not distracting what so ever. These school officials obviously do not like a male child with long hair and that is WRONG. Stop trying to make everyone the same. We are all different and should embrace our differences.

CPN322 CPN322


Aeris... AerisKate

There is a difference in a dress code and having long hair.  When kids wear clothes that show too much skin or shirts that have offensive words on them, this is distracting and detracts from the educational experience.  A kid having shoulder length hair shouldn't interfere with learning.  If it does, then little girls are going to have keep short hair also. 

kisse... kisses5050

if he is Cherokee he should have roll number that protects his rights.. you cant just say oooohhh somewhere down the line there was was someone in the family that was Native American sooooooo I can grow my hair long and that is the one part of the tradition I am going to express...there is a lot more to the heritage than that and it is offensive the Native American community to be use in this manner

nonmember avatar sarahbeth

i can see why schools want such dress codes. when kids are the exactly alike there is no room for bullying. but seeing how you cant make kids exactly alike in every way, their personalties are like snowflakes, different in every way. (and thats a wonderful thing.) instead of making this boy cut his hair so he can be like every other boy in school , they should have a class on his heritage and how it influences his choices and his point of view. use it as a teaching tool and get back to educating our future.

bills... billsfan1104

I think it's more of a shame that she is using some distant relative that claims they are half Cherokee Indian. Has she proved it? What does her family do for the Native American community? And to the author, since when does being Native American a religion?

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