Tulsa school sends girl home over hair


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Updated: 9/06/2013 7:33 am Published: 9/03/2013 11:08 pm


Deborah Brown Community School is one student short for the remainder of the school year.

Terrance Parker said the school hassled him and didn't leave him a choice. Parker said he yanked his 7-year-old daughter, Tiana, out of classes because of a disagreement that left her in tears.

Parker, who's a barber, said school officials at Deborah Brown told him Tiana's hair didn't look presentable.

"She's always presentable. I take pride in my kids looking nice," said Parker.

The charter school has its own set of rules. While no one at the school agreed to speak with us on camera, administrator, Millard Jones told FOX23 that Terrance Parker was fully aware what was expected. However, for his young daughter, it just hurts.

"They didn't like my dreads," said Tiana.

FOX23 reviewed the school's dress code. It states, "hairstyles such as dreadlocks, afros, mohawks, and other faddish styles are unacceptable."

The school feels that could distract from the respectful and serious atmosphere it strives for.

"She went to the school last year and didn't have any problems," said Parker.

Parker said her hair looked the same.

"It hurt my feelings to the core," said Parker.

"I think that they should let me have my dreads," said Tiana.

Tiana, a straight A student, wears a different school uniform now, but the same hair style, which looks perfectly fine according to her new school.


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The views expressed here do not necessarily represent those of KOKI FOX23 - Tulsa

hulon05 - 10/7/2013 8:55 PM
0 Votes
This is the definition of bullying: use of force, threat, or coercion to abuse, intimidate, or aggressively to impose domination over others. Horrifying! To all those saying "it's a rule; if you don't like it, leave"..."No blacks" is also a rule; it does not make it any less racist, immoral or simply disgusting!

Haimericus - 9/25/2013 9:25 PM
0 Votes
What planet are these folks from? I'm an old white guy, don't know much about black folks' hair, but I know it grows differently from mine. An Afro isn't a fad, it's the way your hair grows if it's that curly. It's no more a style choice than my graying hair. Dreadlocks are just a way of arranging that kind of hair, just like I choose to cut my hair short. And anybody with eyes can see that little girl is beautiful just the way she is. Good grief! So sorry she had to go through that, I hope at least it opens people's eyes. I've got a lot more to worry about in my life than what other people do with their hair anyway.

Oneworld - 9/20/2013 4:06 AM
0 Votes
What a pathetic rule. Sounds like the school head has control issues like Hitler. The child has received a message that her looks are more important than her education. A well kempt afro is a beautiful thing. It takes a lot of effort to keep afro hair looking good and I personally prefer to see it natural. Poker straight hair sprayed and ironed afro hair often looks so damaged. Schools and employers should be concerned about the performance and progress of kids and staff, not what they look like. The school is blatantly racist by wanting all pupils to have white American hairstyles. I am white with naturally poker straight hair and I believe natural afro is beautiful. The school is getting a bad reputation.

Free Thinker - 9/11/2013 3:05 PM
0 Votes
Locks to many are not a fashion statement, but rather a cultural statement. Read your Bible...Jesus had hair of wool. There was no comb back in his day, which means his hair "locked up". It is sad that even in Jamaica, locals are required to cut their locks in order to work. It appears to me that some folks are intimidated by lock wearers.

luvkitten27 - 9/11/2013 2:03 PM
0 Votes
I also don't agree that dreadlocks are a fad. I wear synthetic dreads I made and buy like braided in extensions, it is a life choice. I would certainly have natural permanent dreads if it were morr acceptable in society, but I have been treated simular by my Job. I had been wearing them and had been hired with them and wore them for One and a half years, all the sudden I was told that they were not neat enough and needed to stop. My bosses boss is always worried about fashion and less worried about important matters. If they were more worried about the things that mattered, which they are not, things would be much better and the ppl we care for here would receive the care they deserve.

luvkitten27 - 9/11/2013 1:15 PM
0 Votes
I also don't agree that dreadlocks are a fad. I wear synthetic dreads I made and buy like braided in extensions, it is a life choice. I would certainly have natural permanent dreads if it were morr acceptable in society, but I have been treated simular by my Job. I had been wearing them and had been hired with them and wore them for One and a half years, all the sudden I was told that they were not neat enough and needed to stop. My bosses boss is always worried about fashion and less worried about important matters. If they were more worried about the things that mattered, which they are not, things would be much better and the ppl we care for here would receive the care they deserve.

luvkitten27 - 9/11/2013 1:15 PM
0 Votes
I also don't agree that dreadlocks are a fad. I wear synthetic dreads I made and buy like braided in extensions, it is a life choice. I would certainly have natural permanent dreads if it were morr acceptable in society, but I have been treated simular by my Job. I had been wearing them and had been hired with them and wore them for One and a half years, all the sudden I was told that they were not neat enough and needed to stop. My bosses boss is always worried about fashion and less worried about important matters. If they were more worried about the things that mattered, which they are not, things would be much better and the ppl we care for here would receive the care they deserve.

luvkitten27 - 9/11/2013 12:51 PM
0 Votes
Schools , people, and communities like these sicken me. The thing that people don't understand is that most are misinformed about dreadlocks... Is is often misconceived that people with dreads or people that where synthetic dreads are dirty and don't wash their hair, which isn't the case. They wash as much and as often as the average everyday Joe. Your not supposed to wash everyday. Another thing people assumed is that dreads are only for black people. The Vikings had dreads.Many cultures wore dreads through out time. And in some cultures it is actually part of their religion. So for them to claim she wasn't presentable in only a matter of opinion. And this olden day backwards thinking is what kept us from progression. You cannot compare dreads to baggy pants especially when they are well kept and in natural colors, and they wasn't showing her private parts, or insinuating rebellion. It is a life style and life choice. I could see if she showed up with a purple mowhawk. But you gotta realize they damaged this sweet baby's self worth. I myself wear dreads, and have had ppl like and not like them. They don't have them so why worry. And the majority of the ppl who complain are usually stuck up folks who think they are better. I'm glad this girl found somewhere she can be herself and not be treated as an outcast. Besides you know they are wrong for letting her wear them the first year and then taking them away, they should be ashamed for their behavior...

zofischois - 9/10/2013 7:48 PM
1 Vote
It is illegal to discriminate against race or religious views so they think that they can hide their prejudice behind manufacturing hair texture, color or styling policy. How low and disgusting. These people who teach our young need to advance their education in humanities and stop the practice of small town mentality.

Mayor Maynot - 9/10/2013 11:44 AM
1 Vote
Obey the rule or get sent home like a fool.
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