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8‑y-o kicked out of honors class because her hair smelled like Organic Root Stimulator

Avatar • Jun 7, 2010

Haneefa sent me this video. The story itself was reported by Tonya Mosley, who has been featured on BGLH.

Interesting story with some unique angles. It kind of reminds me of that story about the teacher who cut off the black girl’s hair because she was annoyed at the sound of the beads.

Allergies or not, do you think this situation was handled correctly? What message does it send to the girl involved?

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Sofull Sista
10 years ago

First, I want to say CONGRATS to Tonya for rocking her fro, she looks GREAT!

Second, I think that it is absolutely ridiculous to kick someone out of class because of an allergy. The situation was handled very poorly. I think there must be other hidden factors that caused her to kick the girl out of the class that are yet to be seen. The poor little girl is going to remember this moment in her life as a distinct moment when she recognized she was different. Her differences negatively (and wrongfully so) affected her receiving the education she deserves.

Soulfulsista
10 years ago

This is completely ridiculous. If the woman was allergic to the moisturizer, all she had to do was speak to the girl’s mother about it so they could try a different product. To kick the girl out over this is totally incomprehensible. The teacher should be reprimanded and the girl should be allowed back in the honor classes immediately. I pray she doesn’t grow up embarrassed by her hair because of this situation.

Ashleigh L. A.
10 years ago

There is so much wrong with this situation I don’t know where to begin. First, why did the teacher wait until the school year was damn near over to complain about the smell. If her allergies were that serious, I doubt that was the first time the smell bothered her. Next, if smells bother her that bad, why the hell is she a teacher? Children tend to emit quite a few smells and if she is that sensitive, me thinks she needs to find a new profession. This situation could have been handled so much better. She could have arranged a… Read more »

Donna
Donna
10 years ago

Is it only me that heard about this and thought the full story had remained hidden? I wondered why it took the teacher a year to complain — was it that she was afraid to? Was reluctant to have the girl removed from the class until she could no longer take the ORS product or some other reason? Why was the mother not invited to the school to discuss the problem? How could they be sure that it was the ORS — when you have allergies, they can flare up over things you were once tolerant of then one day… Read more »

Marci Toliver
Marci Toliver
10 years ago

I think each of us need to write a well versed letter to the principal and the teacher, expressing EXTREME concern over what has occurred.

Thurgood Marshall Elementary School
http://www.seattleschools.org
2401 South Irving Street
Seattle, WA 98144–3727
(206) 252‑2800

NaturalMe
NaturalMe
10 years ago

Sooooo what exactly is she allergic to? I don’t get it. I’m sorry but as an adult, correction, as a professional adult her priority should be that child and her education! Screw your allergies. I’m just glad to see a white woman using the right products in her biracial child’s hair. My niece is biracial and as much as I try to help her mother pick the right products she refuses to use them in her hair, in fact she refuses to use anything other than shampoo and conditioner. Lawd, help the child. Oh and I love the fro Miss Tonya!… Read more »

trackback

[…] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Black Girl Long Hair, Black Girl Long Hair. Black Girl Long Hair said: An 8‑y-o Seattle girl is kicked out of her honor class b/c her hair smells like Organic Root Stimulator http://bit.ly/bddlAF #naturalhair […]

Cristine
10 years ago

this was NOT handled correctly! it makes me so sad/upset that she had to go through that.

binks
binks
10 years ago

@NaturalMe Exactly, I was thinking the same thing. What exactly is she allergic to in the product? If she had a problem with the product the child uses then she should have talked to the parents first of all from the get go, why wait to the end of the school year to do it. Secondly, why outright say it out loud in front of the class, that was hella childish and unprofessional to do. But why kick her out of all of her honors classes? That is fishy, I hope they do investigate because unless her mother was dumping… Read more »

....
10 years ago

your hair smells like root stimulator so im gonna put you in a regular class (a class you dont belong in) then im gonna kick you out of school so you dont recieve an education.…..SMH

Tonya NewNaturalista
10 years ago

Donna and everyone thanks for the compliments. I agree there is more to the story and I look forward to finding the details out.

Sandy
Sandy
10 years ago

Are workplaces no longer doing sensitivity training?

Or are workers not paying any attention during the training?

Or does having a black man as president of the United States suddenly give folks carte blanche to debase black people — even children — in any and every way?

What happened to this young girl is completely unconscionable!!!

I’m allergic to racism!!!

NappyKitchen
NappyKitchen
10 years ago

This situation could have been handled differently. Someone should have contact that girls mom about the allergies instead of putting the girl on blast like she did something wrong.

Enny
10 years ago

I totally agree with the 2nd post (Soulfulsista).
This situation could have been handled differently. She did not have to kick the girl out of school. Simple as that.
And I hate to say but this is injustice because I believe that if her teacher was fair to her, they (teacher) would have found a middle ground and not just completely put this child at a disadvantage. This sucks.

Nikia
Nikia
10 years ago

This story really gets under my skin. I am outraged at the way the situation was mishandled. Something has to be done.

suryah
10 years ago

UGGG!!! Another Outrage. I have allergies go find another occupation.
This borders on Hateeee pure and simple.

Nicole
Nicole
10 years ago

First of all, she waited a year??? Really??? This is absolutely ridiculous. I find that there are some teachers that constantly talk about parents not being involved in the education of their children, but then a teacher cannot take the initiative to involve parent in order to resolve an issue as simple as this???

Whitney
Whitney
10 years ago

I LOVE Tonya’s hair! Represent! 😀 Many things concern me about this story, especially the fact that an adult pulled a child out of HONOR classes over an allergy when all she had to do is get an over-the-counter allergy medication. You can’t tell a parent what to put or not put in their child’s hair because you have allergies, but the teacher could have been responsible and SUGGESTED it. That’s like taking a child out of class because they have a pet cat’s fur on their clothes and your allergic to cats. Many people have allergies, but they don’t let… Read more »

Meika
Meika
10 years ago

This teacher does not deserve to be teaching if she didn’t have the common sense to realize that this 8‑year-old probably has little to no say in what products are used on her hair, and to take the issue up with the child’s mother.

Cygnet
10 years ago

There is an element to this story that, to this point, every previous commenter seems to have overlooked in your outrage against the teacher, and I agree, her actions were outrageous: The principal of the school knew what the teacher had done and did not act to correct the teacher. This signals to me that it is about more than the teacher and her suspect motives for removing the child from her honors classes. Teachers on this blog, correct me if I’m wrong, but if you get out of line, do you not have to answer to the principal of… Read more »

Donna
Donna
10 years ago

I have an allergy to many scented products which, I suspect, is similar to this teacher’s, so I thought I could give some perspective on that. It sucks. It really, really sucks. It’s not like seasonal allergies or dust allergies, which cause discomfort but can often be controlled with over the counter products. In my case, small amounts of exposure cause migraine-style headaches and nausea, which can last for hours, depending on how heavily I’ve been dosed. And like many other allergies, the more I’m exposed to problem products the worse it gets over time. In my late teens through nearly… Read more »

Michelle F.
Michelle F.
6 years ago
Reply to  Donna

Thank you, your response was informative and filled with hate.

Michelle F.
Michelle F.
6 years ago
Reply to  Michelle F.

Sorry it was supposed to read:
“Thank you, your response was informative and NOT filled with hate.”
My apologies for not editing my response before posting.

tnt_ftw
tnt_ftw
10 years ago

http://www.therotund.com/?p=847 a white woman’s response to this situation. good read

mizztcasa
mizztcasa
10 years ago

wtf. this is ludicrous. feel so sorry for the child — hope she isn’t psychologically harmed by all this mess from the teacher and school. *sigh*

lee
lee
10 years ago

what kills me is the parents of the little girl appear to be very normal. i don’t think mom would have flipped out if the teacher approached her in a respectful way about the allergic reaction of the smell. i am also allergic to strong perfume smells and i do not use that product for that reason. however, the teacher could have just had a fan in the front of the class blowing directly on her or made sure to take a 24 hr claritin in the morning. it’s not that deep!

lee
lee
10 years ago

also, it broke my heart to hear the moms voice cracking as she spoke about her child. such a shame…

Steph
Steph
10 years ago

Tonya’s reppin!

I think everyone has pretty much said it all. I’m just sitting over here in the corner shaking my head. I can’t believe how this situation was handled. A child is missing school because the teacher has allergies? Well, ok then.

Essence
Essence
10 years ago

First off, Tanya, the reporter, looks fab. LOVE HER NATURAL HAIR. Second, this is about her bieng mixed, not the product in her hair. I agree with what others have said, she should have bene moved to another advanced class, unless this woman was the only teacher. Even still, the teacher should have had a conference with the parents and they could have worked something out. But to have the child removed from the her honors classes like that is rediculous.If this isnt modern day racism then idk what is. The teacher/principal both need to be fired. For this to… Read more »

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