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Ohio School Bans Afro Puffs and Braids

• Jun 20, 2013

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The Lorain Horizon Science Academy in Ohio is facing heat from the natural hair community after a copy of a letter to parents that included a ban on afro puffs and ‘small twisted braids’ was posted online.

The letter details changes to the dress code for the upcoming school year and includes the line:

Afro‐puffs and small twisted braids, with our without rubberbands, are NOT permitted.

It’s unclear what the administration means by small twisted braids, but if they are referring to box braids they are banning a protective style that black girls have worn for generations. Afro‐puffs are essentially the black version of the ponytail (when pulled back our hair puffs out instead of laying down), and yet the rules do not have a ban on ponytails for students of other ethnicities.

It’s unspecified whether this ban applies to both male and female students, or male students alone.

The dress code restrictions highlight an age‐old struggle that naturals face from both within and outside of the black community. Our hair is viewed as radical, funky or unruly in its natural state, and restrictions are sometimes placed on us in academic and professional settings that do not extend to our non‐black counterparts.

So far the school hasn’t issued a response or explanation of this dress code item.

What do you think ladies? Is this a fair restriction to include in the dress code? Why or why not?

A copy of the letter is below.

***UPDATE: Just received word that the school has lifted the ban. Here is the letter they issued today:

Screen Shot 2013-06-21 at 4.19.09 PM

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Zoe
Guest
Zoe

Thats ridiculous. And i think by small twisted braids they mean the when you put pigtails and twist the ends in a two strand style. And that would pretty much rule out any hair style besides cornrows for the little natural children of that school. This shouldnt go on unchanged

Charlene
Guest
Charlene

This is absolutely ridiculous. I would like to know what the reasonings were in the first place. And in regards to “smuggling” something in your hair that is a ludricous statment. You can smuggle items practically anywhere. One of the mistakes they made is not to rationalize the purpose for the alleged “draft.” They knew exactly what their purpose was. They just didn’t expect the amount of feedback they received and now they want to “act” as if they’re so sorry. It’s protocol. They now look like racist idiots and they are stuck with their tails between their legs. The… Read more »

Destiny
Guest
Destiny

I really would understand if the rule applied to everyone, but this rule is directly targeted to one ethnicity only. This could have long‐term effects on young girls who actually like their afro‐puffs. Now their school is telling them they’re not allowed to have them as if it’s something they could change. All schools should accept everyone, even if they may have different features. We’re all Human, no matter the color of our skin or the texture of our hair.

Mouse
Guest

Draft copy” my ass.

nonny mouse
Guest

You have got to be kidding me. I’m nearly done with heavy duty chemotherapy after cancer that’s left me with a nearly bald head, only thing I’ve got left is ghastly Gollum straggles — I had to cut off my waist‐length beautiful thick hair off before what was left fell out. I DREAM about having hair again — ANY hair. These kids should be able to wear their hair however they want, revel in it, braid it, spike it, pouff it, dye it purple, have some fun with it. White kids should be able to come in with African styled… Read more »

Chloe
Guest
Chloe

This really pissed me off at first, and then I read the line about how “hair beads are permitted as long as they do not pose a safety risk”. Now I’m just confused. If they object to styles that are popular in the black community, why would beads be the exception? Also, what are black girls supposed to do with their hair if both braids and puffs are outlawed? Are they requiring chemical relaxers be used on these little girls?

I agree with Mouse, though. “Draft copy”, my ass.

Stephanie
Guest

Chloe — they clearly mean your hair beads have to be in the upright and locked position. (Or they will fall out and cause other people to slip on them.) 😛 😛 😛

But on a more serious matter, when I was in elementary school they banned afropuffs and flat tops for a while because they were so tall that kids couldn’t see over them. You could put your hair in a pony tail — but it wasn’t allowed to be more than like half an inch above your head or something. LOL

Stacey
Guest
Stacey

They are always sorry when they get caught. Sorry asses!!!

The Mane Captain
Guest

I’ glad they lifted the ban! very ridiculous

themanecaptain.blogspot.ca

Vionka Leal
Guest
Vionka Leal

I would never send my child to a school like this. This is crazy!!! I sure they don’t say their white counterparts can’t color their hair or have outlandish haircuts!! This is sad.

Jacky
Guest
Jacky

I’m glad that they lifted the ban

trackback

[…] The internet rumor mill has been buzzing for the second week in a row regarding an Ohio school’s alleged ban on wearing Afro Puff hair styles as will as Twisted Braid styles.  Apparently, the administrators of Horizon Science Academy in Lorain, Ohio sent out a memo last week outlining the schools new dress code.  The new rules state that “Afro puffs and small twisted braids with or without rubber bands are NOT permitted.”  Yet in another rules it states that “hair must look natural”.  We have not been able to confirm exactly what this means or if this is… Read more »

billy
Guest

the follow up letter is simply hilarious:

we’re really really sorry for being racist (expletive expletives) and we promise it won’t happen again. honest”

trackback

[…] any of this has to do with afro‐puffs remains unclear. The ban raised the eye over at Black Girl Long Hair, who points […]

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[…] View an actual copy of the school ban and apology letter in it’s entirety click here […]

Mandy
Guest
Mandy

Not for nothing, but how are other kids going to see behind a nappy birds nest? I’m jamaican, and I’m tired of hearing the black community always complaining and relying on “it’s because i’m black” no, it’s not because you’re black, it’s because your a sad individual, that’s why

Jabroni
Guest
Jabroni

And the future of education lies on Charter Schools like these? Save us all.

Kaysema
Guest
Kaysema

Who sends dey kid out da house lookin like mickey mouse, this aint no disney world and such. send dat girl back home and put some oil in dose naps!

kan
Guest
kan

Hi Troll “Kaysema” — you are REALLY bad at trying to sound “Black”.

Nappychique
Guest
Nappychique

wow…guess I wouldn’t be moving to Ohio.

Cia
Guest

We need to seriously protest. I am NOT ok with this. How dare anyone ban me from doing MY child’s hair in the way WE do our children’s hair. My little sister is having an inner battle with herself, whether she knows it or not, about her hair being texture and thick. She is one of the few Black American Young Girls in her school in NC and she enjoys wearing her hair blown straight. I think she likes that it helps her blend in and not be picked on because her hair is different. I understand there is work… Read more »

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[…] when you started to have faith in humanity: Black Girl Long Hair got their hands on a document from the Lorain, Ohio Horizon Science Academy, in which styling […]

viola Eagle
Guest

I think the braids are very pretty, all you have to do is
look at it, and you can tell they have spent a lot of time, to make it look beautiful, all hair is different, I
see nothing upsetting or wrong, about how anyone wants to
fix their hair, the school was wrong in singling out one
race of people and their hair do’s. A lot of people would give a whole lot, to have beautiful curly hair, and I am one of them!!!

viola Eagle
Guest

I think the braids are very pretty, all you have to do is
look at it, and you can tell they have spent a lot of time, to make it look beautiful, all hair is different, I
see nothing upsetting or wrong, about how anyone wants to
fix their hair, the school was wrong in singling out one
race of people and their hair do’s. A lot of people would give a whole lot, to have beautiful curly hair, and I am one of them!!!

trackback

[…] Academy in Ohio, making changes to the dress code for the upcoming school year.. According to Blackgirllonghair, the letter states twists, afro puffs, small twisted braids, bleached or dyed hair are BANNED!! […]

warrior 71
Guest
warrior 71

Ziek Heil Principal and school district. Until you are 18 the state has you by the rear in school.

Barbara
Guest
Barbara

So, did they ever explain what thinking went into this policy or what purpose was supposedly served by it? Or is it still just CYA, all the way?

Arggg
Guest
Arggg

This sounds like a fishy rule. Afro puffs are adorable, and there’s nothing wrong with braids of any kind. They should ask that kids have hair that is clean, neat, and out of their faces, and that’s ALL.

trackback

[…] An Ohio school bans Afro puffs and twists…really though? This is the same underlying mentality that had me scared to wear my texture and still has me wondering if I can wear my texture in an interview. Maybe I’m more charged up than usual because of the OWN documentary Dark Girls, but either way it’s ridiculous.  Please read this article for yourself and tell me if I’m crazy: http://bglh-marketplace.com/2013/06/ohio-school-bans-afro-puffs-and-braids/ […]

Nechel
Guest
Nechel

Sounds like the dumbest rule anyone could ever think up. Braids cause no harm, it’s a hair style and an Afro puff is just your natural hair pulled and gathered in an “Afro pony tail.” My high school use to ban guys from wearing their facial hair. My dad said if you shaved to often it irritated your skin, cause bumps and scars. But their parents could sign something that says “No my child does not need to follow that policy and shave.” So as for this Afro puff ordeal I would tell the school that this afro puff ordeal… Read more »

shari
Guest
shari

lawd help that child.…she look like mickey mouse. can we get this girl a relaxer? and shame on the mother makin her look like a fool. look like mickey mouse…smdh.

Ashley
Guest
Ashley

You are just a troll sitting at home making negative comments about hair texture/styles. smdh.

Rona
Guest
Rona

ya’ll people think this is bad? think it’s only happening to us black folk? i’m an african american lesbian, and i can’t even hold hands in public with my indian girlfriend…my gf aint sayin “it’s cuz i’m indian” that’s why i’m so ashamed of the black community…always blaming it on race. how is a child going to see the front of the classroom sitting behind hair a foot tall? it’s not race people, wake up and stop making us black folk look bad!

Ashley
Guest
Ashley

Don’t turn this into a subject about homosexuality. Of course people are going to look because it is not a common practice for women/girlfriends to be holding hands in public, especially if they are of another race. Your blanket statements about race show me that you are ignorant. You seem like a troll, so go to another website.

Maria
Guest
Maria

Stupid, stupid, stupid. You just made black folk and lesbians look dumb. Wake up, fool…and move over if you can’t see around my big Afro puff.

Sinia
Guest
Sinia

When I was younger I went to an all black private school.That adored natural hair on both boys and girls,but now that I’m 17..and attend a public school with all differentethnicities.Walking around with this huge afro pony is such an distraction!!It’s all about your environment and who your around. Obviously people still don’t understand our hair!!

Rona
Guest
Rona

People always sayin it’s about race! ya’ll people are just as bad…yall just angry black folk who are ignorant. do da Jewish people still hate germans cuz a what happened in the past? slavery ended.…now theres white folk ..black folk…oriental folk who be gettin paid to do poop jobs. ya’ll need to move to africa if yall think youll be happier. that’s why i ashamed of the black community. ya’ll are just angry…angry black folk are just as racist. ..smdh

Devilkiller
Guest
Devilkiller

Why don’t you go to hell lucifer arrogant asshole.

Nikki
Guest
Nikki

Besides the overall ignorance you’re spewing I think they’re called. “Asians” not Oriental. That’s a rug Dumba**!

Ashley
Guest
Ashley

You seem ignorant yourself. Do da Jewish people still hate germans cuz a what happened in the past? Some might. Go survey all Jewish people to get an accurate answer. The Holocaust and race based slavery are two different things. Both were extremely brutal and oppressive but they were two different events in history. “Yall need to move to africa if yall think youll be happier.” What a blanket statement about Africa. Everyone in Africa does not think the same. Once again your ignorance is astounding. If you are ashamed of the black community then I would suggest you stop… Read more »

Ashley
Guest
Ashley

Oh and if you think slavery ended please read the 13th amendment which I doubt you would do. So here it is.

13th amendment: Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.

Today we would call punishment for crime and conviction the prison system… smdh

kan
Guest
kan

LOL…Rona is so not Black…girl/boy go on somewhere with all that…this is NOT a gay/lesbian support site.

Zenobia Landrum
Guest
Zenobia Landrum

NO! The Jewish have no reason to be angry anymore.…you’ve been paid your reparations for what was wrongly and inhumanely done to your people. Now, think about the Africans/Blacks who STILL have not been given reparations for what was wrongly and inhumanely done to OUR people; STILL have not been given what was promised in the Constitution; and STILL being targeted negatively for JUST BEING BLACK and having NATURALLY puffy hair! So we have something to be angry about!

Sue-Ann Allidice
Guest
Sue-Ann Allidice

Did the puffy hair and the braid caused some kind of dangers are concerned that lead it to be incorporated into
the school policy ? Why dose the dress code policy points at a certain ethnic group “African American students” And why why didn‘t the school made a sincere apology to the group that they had offended.

Mignon
Guest
Mignon

That school had to lift the ban, otherwise they would be restricting you from being black. Black hair puffs up, that’s what it does! And one of the many reasons we braid it, is to stretch it & smooth it out in a healthy way (without heat/chemicals). And furthermore, what are “twisted braids”? And who uses rubberbands (which pulls your hair out) anymore? Come on now.

trackback

[…] viewed as unkempt, they won’t likely be fired for making a political statement. The recent ban on afro puffs and braids at a school in Lorraine, Ohio was not targeted at white girls. The growing number of […]

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[…] viewed as unkempt, they won’t likely be fired for making a political statement. The recent ban on afro puffs and braids at a school in Lorraine, Ohio was not targeted at white girls. The growing number of […]

trackback

[…] Continue reading on Black Girl with Long Hair […]

CiCi
Guest
CiCi

Anyone of every race should be able to wear their hair the way they want. This is outrageous. I don’t feel the school is picking on her because she is black. I’m black & I sent my daughter to a catholic school and they have strict rules about dress codes, so I don’t think it’s a race thing. However, it so happened to be a black girl…but shame on the school.

trackback

[…] Leila Noelliste – Creator of Black Girl Long Hair […]

patricia towers
Guest
patricia towers

Shame on this school! Racism is at the fore front. Target the white kids who have tats all over their body.I’m sick of looking at that. Target white kids who are the fore front of mass destruction of schools. Shame on this school how backwards you are looking nationally.

trackback

[…] site Black Girl Long Hair points out the dress code is unclear; do those rules apply just to boys and girls? If the rule is […]

trackback

[…] viewed as unkempt, they won’t likely be fired for making a political statement. The recent ban on afro puffs and braids at a school in Lorraine, Ohio was not targeted at white girls. The growing number of […]

trackback

[…] On June 14, officials at Horizon Science Academy in Lorian sent a letter to parents, explaining the new dress code. Among other rules, the updated regulations said that “afro‐puffs and small twisted braids, with or without rubber bands are NOT permitted.” […]

imani
Guest
imani

specifically calling them by their popular term “afro” right away makes this a biased race issue. Afro puff simply refers to how coarse& kinkier african am hair appears when in a ponytail. If they said “no ponytails” they know that means white girls couldn’t wear their flat laying hair in school either & god forbid! Bc its NOT abt the white ppls hairstyles. Once again its white america feeling uncomfortable abt our blackness.I can’t control how my cuticles Lay & shouldn’t have to! Its telling blk girls to get with the program and conform! Its insulting to think I shouldn’t… Read more »

Rona
Guest
Rona

This is disgusting! I am SHOCKED that this is even legal! This has got to stop! Please get this new “racist” dress code thrown out! UNBELIEVABLE!!!

trackback

[…] a place of public accommodation due to (her) sex and sexual orientation.” But an Ohio school added a prohibition against “Afro‐puffs and small twisted braids with or without rubberbands” to their updated […]

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[…] via R7 e Black Girl With Long Hair […]

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[…] wake of backlash from a letter, sent to parents at Horizon Science Academy before being obtained by Black Girl Long Hair, which stated that “afro‐puffs and small twisted braids, with or without rubber bands are NOT […]

Maria
Guest
Maria

I don’t even know where to begin. I grew up in Northern Kentucky as a minority black student. My mom sent me to the salon to get my first relaxer when I was ten years old, partly because she was tired of dealing with my hair and partly because I would fit in better with the all‐white‐but‐me classroom I faced every day. There are so many black women with the same/similar story. My natural hair is a blessing to me each and every day because it shows me the gift I had from God that I tried to hide for… Read more »

trackback

[…] braids, with or without rubber bands.” After getting some public shine on the popular blog, Black Girl Long Hair and receiving backlash, the school issued an […]

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[…] In addition, afro‐puffs, as has been mentioned by multiple blogs and commenters including BGLH.com, are the “black version of the ponytail (when pulled back our hair puffs out instead of […]

trackback

[…] braids, with or without rubber bands.” After getting some public shine on the popular blog, Black Girl Long Hair and receiving backlash, the school issued an […]

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[…] braids, with or without rubber bands.” After getting some public shine on the popular blog, Black Girl Long Hair and receiving backlash, the school issued an […]

Abi
Guest
Abi

As a white trans* woman, I’m not sure just how valued my input may be. But here goes anyway. There are very few reason that a hairstyle should be banned, the most prevalent being safety. But as other hairstyles were not banned, this is obviously not the case. Those of you who are parents, are lists of appearance regulations like this commonplace? And personally, I don’t like “good hair”. 🙂

Will
Guest
Will

I’m a white male and partially native american… with that said even I find what this school was trying to pull as rather outrageous and disrespectful to the black community. Why is it afro‐puffs aren’t allowed but ponytails are allowed? Why is it small tight braids aren’t allowed but regular braids are? There is no reason for this idiotic crap beyond racism… That and the teachers desperate desire to control everything about our children while turning them into mindless worker drones.

Susan
Guest
Susan

How can they use “Hair must look natural” and “no Afro‐Puffs” together?

Mother of One
Guest
Mother of One

Okay, first off, I’m white, mother of a five year old girl with waist long hair. My first impression of the pic shown was that she’s adorable, but how could any student seated behind her see around her hair…at all? Is that fair to any child in the room? How much does that affect the decision? How much gang activity is there in the district in reference to the small twisted braids? Does this indicate gang influence or affiliation? As for beads in the hair, do they make lots of noise as they move around? Are the kids doing it… Read more »

Clifton
Guest
Clifton

I have a hard time believing that your response is sincere. Partly I wondered if it were a joke simply to incite a response. If your comments represent your genuine position I am far more concerned. “How could any student seated behind her see around her hair?”??? What you may not realize is that to impose conditions upon anyone that prohibits them from expressing their natural traits is oppressive, at best. Can we then argue that no Black children in an African nation can get a decent education because no one can see over anyone’s head and the class room… Read more »

Mother of One
Guest
Mother of One

First off, my ex‐ boyfriend of THREE years was black, so don’t play the race card on me! He and I are still friends…it just didn’t work out. In addition to that, my grandmother was half‐Cherokee raised in Alabama LONG before civil rights came around. Because she was a so‐called “half‐breed” she was legally denied ANY kind of education. When she married, she HID her heritage to protect HER children from the same discrimination! My comments were not meant to be hurtful. The classroom should be about gaining an education that moves one FORWARD in life. If the students are… Read more »

Shauna B.
Guest
Shauna B.

I see your point but you teach your children to say something to their teacher about any issue they come across in class. If they can’t see raise your hand and say so. I understand that little girls hair is interesting but your school work is more imporatant save that for the playground. Black people are limited to the natural ways we can style our hair and to have us not be able to do this for our little girls is ridiculous. I don’t care what the problem may be but by banning something black people have been doing with… Read more »

Daneisha
Guest
Daneisha

Your daughter cries when you want to cut her long natural hair, so what about the little girls who going to cry because they can’t wear their natural hair at all. Same difference only the skin colors are different and the type of “natural” hair are also.

Mother of One
Guest
Mother of One

First off, my ex‐ boyfriend of THREE years was black, so don’t play the race card on me! He and I are still friends…it just didn’t work out. In addition to that, my grandmother was half‐Cherokee raised in Alabama LONG before civil rights came around. Because she was a so‐called “half‐breed” she was legally denied ANY kind of education. When she married, she HID her heritage to protect HER children from the same discrimination! My comments were not meant to be hurtful. The classroom should be about gaining an education that moves one FORWARD in life. If the students are… Read more »

Michelle
Guest
Michelle

Stop! Troll!

pam
Guest
pam

its amazing that so many of Gods children behave this way, maybe if we open our eyes, ears and HEARTS, the world could be a better place for all of us no matter what race you are. so next time you want to comment please really think about how you might hurt or offend someone else. Isn’t there more important things to fix in this world ????child molestation ‚rape, murder ‚hunger, domestic violence, child sex slavery and the list goes on . God help us ALL.….….

Mother of One
Guest
Mother of One

First off, my ex‐ boyfriend of THREE years was black, so don’t play the race card on me! He and I are still friends…it just didn’t work out. In addition to that, my grandmother was half‐Cherokee raised in Alabama LONG before civil rights came around. Because she was a so‐called “half‐breed” she was legally denied ANY kind of education. When she married, she HID her heritage to protect HER children from the same discrimination! My comments were not meant to be hurtful. The classroom should be about gaining an education that moves one FORWARD in life. If the students are… Read more »

Mother of One
Guest
Mother of One

And if anyone really reads my responses that would see that I did not say it is fair to single out anyone based upon race. I don’t think it is. What is did say and will continus to assert is that if any student creates a distraction in any way, it should be addressed in the best interest of the LEARNING environment!!!

Unknown
Guest
Unknown

why should HAIR cause a distraction, though? are the other kids going to be in awe of the kid with the big afro and not pay attention in class? come on.

IN My Humble Opinion
Guest
IN My Humble Opinion

Do Black people seriously think that only they have Highly textured hair??? Then they haven’t met a Jew who would be socially considered white. I am a hair dresser doing all hair types for almost 15 years. I have white, black, Asian, Indian, and you name it coming to see me. They all have different textures. I have done many Black women with fine soft hair. Quit feeding this. Go to the school without an attitude and educate them on your hair types and why you do the braids, why do the pony tails, why you choose to keep it… Read more »

Mother of One
Guest
Mother of One

Awesome picture! I love your response.

Yeah right
Guest
Yeah right

If a black girl Xith an Afro can’t put her hair in ponytails or out because its puffy and can’t be braided because they disagree with them what’s left?not everyone wants to put chemicals in their hair especially not their children’s.and im not going to run heat over a childs hear constantly as shes having a tantrum.you want to shave her hair?please get real.my childs braids have. Never hindered someones ability to receive an education.and what other races wear small tight braids most of time??

Mother of One
Guest
Mother of One

http://m.huffpost.com/us/entry/3498502 For those of you calling me racist for asking questions as to “why the ban was proposed and by whom”, please follow this link to The Huffington Post’s website. It appears that the ban on puffs wasn’t even applicable to girls! It was directed towards the male student body because and I quote: “It had nothing to do with African American young ladies. It was rally moreso directed towards African American young men here at this school. There were a couple of young gentlemen here at the middle school and part of the policy here is to have shirts… Read more »

Mr. Gordon
Guest
Mr. Gordon

It is very likely the school is operating off a pretext to ban a hairstyle typically worn by blacks and justifying its’ decision by “want[ing] the young men to be well groomed.” There is a fine distinction between banning a particular hairstyle and demanding, pursuant to school policy, that a particular hairstyle be well‐groomed.

Olivia
Guest
Olivia

Well… if this was directed to the male students, why not make it general instead of racist. They could have said all male students must be well groomed and maintain a regular hair cut no longer than 2 inches in length. No need to mention puffs and braids.… ridiculous

Mari
Guest
Mari

So why did they not break it down to male and female dress code requirements. I went to a school that did not want males with long crazy hair they specifically said males. It was worded better than I am saying it but you get me. This school put out a statement which an educated person should have noticed needed certain specifications to be less offensive.

Teach
Guest
Teach

Nearly all HSA schools use similar policies. HSA Cleveland has been for years. It’s not an issue…at all.

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[…] popular natural hair blog Black Girl with Long Hair, states that, “The dress code restrictions highlight an age‐old struggle that naturals face from […]

princesspr
Guest
princesspr

Oh, Puleazzzzz…that so was NOT a draft! It was the final copy and the school was definitely talking about African American students. What a joke!

jimmy
Guest
jimmy

Hair styles like “afro puffs” and mini twist or any hair style a parent decides to give their child they have a right to do so. The hair was not colored blue or done in a dramatic style so it should not be frowned upon. I am not calling you racist but it sure does look that way. In some cultures like islander cultures, it isto part of thier culture for men to have long dreads. Black hair is already hard to manage do you really think we want to make it harder. That rule shouldn’t have even been considered,… Read more »

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[…] goes far beyond the Supreme Court and into the everyday where young black girls are told that they cannot wear their hair in afro puffs and black women have to fight off the stigma associated with wearing their hair natural. Both hair […]

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[…] UPDATE:  Happy to report that the school has responded to the outcry and rescinded this policy. […]

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[…] June 14th Horizon Science Academy, a charter school in Lorain, OH, issued a new dress code for its 500 students in kindergarten to 10th grade. The kids wear uniforms, but a dress code is […]

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[…] me. Between hearing of a little black girl whose braids were cut off by a teacher , an Ohio school banning natural hairstyles for black children, the Paula Deen fiasco and the George Zimmerman trial I was SPENT. When the […]

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[…] Black Girl with Long Hair reports that Horizon Science Academy, a Cleveland charter school, has instituted a ban on “afro puffs” and “small twisted braids.”  Ironically, the same policy requires students’ hair to “look natural.”  I assume this refers to hair color–students dyeing their hair pink or blue or some other non‐naturally occurring color–or perhaps the use of gels to sculpt hair into gravity‐defying shapes.  So, while other students’ use of chemicals to radically alter the state of their hair is restricted, black students are effectively required to alter theirs. […]

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[…] there’s this article in Black Girl With Long Hair about a charter school that banned “Afro‐puffs and small twisted braids, with or without […]

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[…] Found at BGLH […]

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[…] full Article:  http://bglh-marketplace.com/2013/06/ohio-school-bans-afro-puffs-and-braids/ Did you like this? Share it: Tweet Tweet Share (function() { var li […]

toucanne
Guest
toucanne

If what you want in your dress code is for all boys to have short hair, then say, “all male students should keep their hair short.” How short‐sighted and insensitive can you get? It sounds like they’re private school, so i guess they can stipulate a dress code, but good luck enforcing that in this day and age. Many ethnicities have a tradition of longer hair for males. They shouldn’t have a problem with it as long as the boys are clean and well‐groomed.

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[…] di informashon: Black Girl Long Hair i […]

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[…] a place of public accommodation due to (her) sex and sexual orientation.” But an Ohio school added a prohibition against “Afro‐puffs and small twisted braids with or without rubberbands” to their updated […]

I wish things were better
Guest

The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift. (Albert Einstein)

danny
Guest
danny

I cant believe this. Why in the world would a school board make such a decision. They DID NOT have to do this. They already took away the students rights to wear regular clothes. Now, they are taking away their right to wear their hair the way they want??!!I mean really. It shouldn’t be the school’s decision on how the child wears their hair, it should be the parents or child’s decision on how they want to wear THEIR HAIR!!!! Point Blank.

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Beauti Lewis
Guest
Beauti Lewis

Instead of trying to call anyone names, I have a question. If the comment was meant for boys only why was it not put in the paper at the end of the bullet. If you look at the bullet right before it it clearly states boys only so if this is the case why not do it for the next bullet as well. My opinion is clear, it was originally meant for all students but because people complained the school tried to save face by stating it was a mistake. This is my opinion and you do not like what… Read more »

Mary Keith
Guest
Mary Keith

When did hair style become a part of education,hair has nothing to do with a child getting a education, grades matter not styles. Wow what is the problem say it’s not racist well you fool me ‚racism has went no where. seeing whites has adapted to our hair style, so it should have been made clear . Our style is unique,as well as our children.who why and how did this even be put into as you say a draft I don’t get it.

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[…] Read more about the story and  the official letters  here: http://bglh-marketplace.com/2013/06/ohio-school-bans-afro-puffs-and-braids/ […]

Jeyonaka
Guest
Jeyonaka

Well it looks like to me if they didn’t want blacks to wear they hair a certain way then they should have segregated the school instead of trying to make blacks look white so they can fit in the white society.they already hate the way we look,dress,now our hair,might as well just go back to hating us all the way and segregate everything else instead of say ignorant shit a then want to apologize about…!!!It looks like to me they want an race war!!!

Jin
Guest
Jin

Jeyonaka, these people at the school are so ignorant that I’m embarrassed. Even as a white boy I know the rule is crazy, my sister is half black and I do her hair in styles like this all the time, they’re cute and practical and pretty much the only styles she can wear… This is shameful, I totally wish I could yell at whatever idiot decided to make this rule.

What does this school think the little girls’ hair should look like instead? Are kindergartners now expected to wear straight weaves? It’s ridiculous.

motherofone
Guest
motherofone

Seriously. I wish this blogger would either update the info on this post or delete it entirely. The rule was aimed towards the male student body. It WAS NOT meant to target little girls, any girls. Apparently they are having a problem with a couple of young African American MALE students. The school board is trying to get the student body to hold a certain standard; trying to get the students to emulate a college preparatory school. YES they should then also state that all MALE students, not just African American students should have their hair a certain length. It… Read more »

d
Guest
d

men or female it is still sexist and racial because if you said that the letter is meant for young black male students. So even if the interviewer was black so what he still is targeting a certain race and an a certain sex. It still is wrong either way you put it. And in college you have no rules on how to wear your hair. They are very wrong for writing this letter and they know what they doing. Those administrators are not dumb they don’t like the black community to wear there hair natural. And two kids doesn’t… Read more »

E in CT
Guest

Well going unasked is “what is well groomed for a young black boy?” I have attended and taught at several elite prep schools and the college bound boy’s looks and hair have run the gamut. Have you ever seen the students at Harvard or Howard or Williams? How about we try to raise the kids’ SAT scores and leave their hair alone?

Michael J.
Guest
Michael J. "Orange Mike" Lowrey

Let the congregation say, “Amen!” Teach our children to out‐think The Man, not out‐preppie him.

motherofone
Guest
motherofone

Please do some research into this topic. The school board has African American members that support the rule. They helped to draft the school dress policy. Google the school and the topic of hair. It will show you why they tried to establish the hair rule in the first place. It’s been repealed. There is no issue here. The blogger is just trying to get people pissed off and fighting each other…via misinformation, omission of the facts, trusting that the reader doesn’t bother to investigate the facts before responding…And I think we all know it’s working

Clara
Guest
Clara

The rule right above that one has an addendum to show that it only applies to boys, while the puffs and braids one does not…so if indeed it only applies to boys, why doesn’t it?

Jaylah Jefferson
Guest
Jaylah Jefferson

Even if they are black it wouldn’t matter. I would see them as sellouts to their own community. Self hatred a byproduct of racism is just as wrong and the worst kind of display. So motherophone, with due respect, the interpretation of the article I read felt like a stab through my heart and your explanation of the events was the knife twisting.

EdeRock
Guest
EdeRock

This is what you call blatant racial harrassment. Poor kid.

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[…] Did they learn nothing from the school than tried to ban the afro puff, AKA the humble ponytail? Ohio School Bans Afro Puffs and Braids *UPDATE!* | Black Girl with Long Hair And apparently this time the school is run by African Americans Tulsa school sends girl home over […]

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[…] isn’t the first story of its kind. Earlier this year a school in Ohio banned afros and braids in a new dress code (they later rescinded the policy after public outcry). In 2012, Hampton […]

Jaylah Jefferson
Guest
Jaylah Jefferson

I had to sit back and think about this and this is my conclusion. Threat! In my head being black equals being a threat. Not conforming to America’s cultural standard is threatening. I believe that more and more black women are becoming more open to being natural and are encouraging their children. I also believe people are beginning to take notice and again it’s threatening and incomprehensible that more and more blacks are becoming comfortable in their own hair

Jin
Guest
Jin

Even if this was only meant for male students, it still just shows the level of ignorance that still exists about this sort of thing. Evidently, certain people still think you can just “undo” an afro or braids and the hair will hang flat like white hair types, which is not the case. (I suspect straight black weaves with a texture pretty similar to natural hair have something to do with this misconception, I’ve known a couple teachers who just assume that such styles are natural.) We need to be educating people about these things, people need to learn that… Read more »

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[…] Black Girl Long Hair article on Ohio issue: http://bglh-marketplace.com/2013/06/ohio-school-bans-afro-puffs-and-braids/ […]

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[…] emergency, but because of the way her hair was styled. I always seem to have a hope when I read these types of stories that it just couldn’t be true. Approximately 3 months ago, an Ohio school decided to ban […]

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[…] emergency, but because of the way her hair was styled. I always seem to have a hope when I read these types of stories that it just couldn’t be true. Approximately 3 months ago, an Ohio school decided to ban Afro […]

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[…] Ohio School Board Ban […]

Arnold Johnson
Guest
Arnold Johnson

Also ban white girls and others with long straight hair from wearing “pony tails”, “pig tails”, “buns”, “Shirley Temple curls”. But you all know this a social mind control issue. The outward expression is evidence that the ego/mind hasn’t been fully captured, channeled or trained according to the likes of some. Uniformity and conformity can backfire. The emphasis of school should not be the indoctrination of what to think, but and especially with black students, how to use the mind to think, to reason (oh, that’s new). Parents should resist living out their creativity through their children’s appearance knowing full… Read more »

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[…] should not be punished, or banned for wearing our natural hair.  I love what Leila, founder of Black Girl Long Hair had to say in response to the […]

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[…] Check out the story originally posted in BGLH […]

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[…] Horizon Science Academy in Lorain, Ohio issued a new dress code this month. In the letter— obtained by the blog Black Girl Long Hair — a lot of the things not permitted make sense: No […]

Blackpower
Guest
Blackpower

I am so on the progress we are making so far. There are white people out there that secretly see how beautiful black hair is and just want us to continue to wear wigs and weaves to look like them. Why would you tell someone that they cannot wear their hair they way God has made it for them? this baffles me. Our hair, is a political statement…wow

ciku
Guest
ciku

weird how in Africa if we saw that little girl with the lovely afro puffs, everyone would go “wow, she has lovely hair”.
in my country, a lot of the public schools ban relaxers and hair extensions on girls up to the age of 14, which is why a lot of girls here rock afro puffs and natural hair braids/twists here.
I think its sad for anything natural to be deemed “unacceptable” or “inappropriate”

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[…] I have to admit, it is disheartening to publish another piece like this. Just months after an Ohio school banned afro puffs and 7‐year‐old Tiana Parker faced constant harassment from school administrators for her locs, […]

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[…] I have to admit, it is disheartening to publish another piece like this. Just months after an Ohio school banned afro puffs and 7‐year‐old Tiana Parker faced constant harassment from school administrators for her locs, […]

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[…] I have to admit, it is disheartening to publish another piece like this. Just months after an Ohio school banned afro puffs and 7‐year‐old Tiana Parker faced constant harassment from school administrators for her locs, […]

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[…] […]

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[…] dress codes to disproportionately penalize children with Africanized, kinkier hair. Last June, Ohio’s Lorain Horizon Science Academy earned outrage after sending home letters that read, “Afro‐puffs and small twisted braids, with or without […]

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[…] Ohio School Bans Afro Puffs and Braids This story gained national news coverage, but we actually broke it here first on BGLH after […]

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[…] Ohio School Bans Afro Puffs and Braids This story gained national news coverage, but we actually broke it here first on BGLH after […]

Jujudollie
Guest
Jujudollie

Why is there a war against natural black hair? This is shameless, blatant, obscene racial predjudice and discrimination.
Natural black hair = black power. Keep fighting. The racists will never win this war.

Brian Banks
Guest
Brian Banks

Well let’s be perfectly honest here. The hairstyle is over the top and the school is right to make the recommendation the did. And racism has nothing to do with it, The rule applies to all students who sport unacceptable hairstyles. A school is a place to learn, not a fashion show.

And for the record Jujudollie, Stop bringing the race card into this, As i’ve already stated race has got nothing to do with it. It’s the ditzy mother who allows this girl to attend school like this.

society
Guest
society

Alright.Pig tails not allowed.1 big ponytail will also get titled as inappropriate so not allowed.A bun will probably be poofy without heat so im guessing not allowed.Braids not allowed.SMALL braids with or without rubberbands are not allowed even though theres no way on earth this is distracting.What would you suggest as an hairstyle for girls with her hair type?please enlighten me.

Alix Kayy
Guest
Alix Kayy

I’m guessing your not black or you would understand. That’s how some black peoples natural hair grows, my hair included. It grows out instead of down, or it grows kinky and coily and all over the place. We cant tell our hair to lie straight like other peoples hair. If I were to put my hair in a ponytail it would be puffy. I don’t have to tease it or use hair spray, that’s just how it is NATURALLY. Braids are a protective style that is a part of my culture. Black people use braids to protect our hair because… Read more »

missDD86
Guest
missDD86

Shut your punk ass, racist ass up. Not even sure why you are on this page, you bigoted piece of shit. I would NEVER want my hair to be straight, stringly and doggish like that mop you call hair on your head. There is a reason your ugly ass hair grows straight down toward hell while ours grow up toward the heavens. We are kings and queens you fucking Neanderthal. You have NO right to tell me that the hair that NATURALLY grows from my head is unacceptable. By who’s standards? Euro‐centric standards? Fuck your standards! We don’t need you… Read more »

Dora B
Guest
Dora B

I know I’m 2 years late Brian but if you were standing in front me right now I would punch you in the face for this racist ignorant post!

Melissa F
Guest
Melissa F

The parents of this girl are complete and utter idiots for styling her hair to resemble Minnie mouse. Who in the right mind would do this to a child? A ditzy person no doubt. And this in not a natural hairstyle, Jujudollie, It’s a “style hairstyle” not a “natural” hairstyle. So get your facts right before you start squeezing designer words through that tiny provincial brain of yours. Just like this girls, you too have no class or culture, All you do is try to sound intelligent by repeating what similars screamed out before you. The race card is getting… Read more »

putthemintheirplace
Guest
putthemintheirplace

Are you an idiot or are you just not familiar with other races?if you saw a white girl with 2 ponytails would you say its not natural?That girl NATURALLY has an afro and has her hair in two ponytails.her hair is not styled that way,it is naturally big!Would you rather the child come to school with just an afro??I’m sorry that the only way her hair will lay down like a white girl’s hair is with chemicals/heat which IS NOT natural.Keep your mouth closed if you have nothing educated to say.

Naturallybeautiful
Guest
Naturallybeautiful

All this comment did was make me laugh . It’s funny how people can be do ignorant. Honestly it is a natural hairstyle and if you don’t know anything about natural hair I suggest you not say anything. What was she supposed to do straighten her hair all the time for the school. That would totally destroy her BEAUTIFUL hair.

Ebony
Guest
Ebony

Melissa please don’t talk about anything you know nothing about.

missDD86
Guest
missDD86

Get off this page you racist, oppressive piece of crap. No one needs you here, idiot.

AuroraMoon
Guest
AuroraMoon

*face‐palms* This IS a natural hairstyle for black girls. I’ve grown up around black girls on my block, so I’ve personally seen for myself how their hair just grows outwards and up instead of growing flat. The afro is what you get if their hair is left untreated and not doused in chemicals.
And shut your mouth about that little girl! All little black girls are instantly ten times cuter with afro puffs, in my opinion.

Jocelyn Butler
Guest
Jocelyn Butler

The same parent that would send their kid to school with pigtails you idiot

Tracie Actress Phelps
Guest
Tracie Actress Phelps

Black girls have been wearing this hairstyle since I was little. I am 47 now. And It is a natural hairstyle. When our hair is chemical‐ free, it puffs out like that! WE as AFRICAN_AMERICANS GOT OUR FACTS STRAIGHT. If you have a problem with it, Go TALK TO GOD ABOUT IT! HE CREATED our HAIR! CREATED BY THE KING HIMSELF! ROYAL HAIR!

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[…] Ohio school bans afro puffs and braids […]

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It can do absolutely nothing to raise your understanding of the niche, along with the reason for university and university would be to learn. Buying custom essays from United States Writing Companies has a lot of advantages: It can give you a piece of writing that’s beyond compare, it allows you to save more time and beat the deadline, have interesting details and limitless custom essay topics, as well as have the opportunity to build up ideas to improve your paper. While I know what it means to do that, I wasn’t quite sure if I needed to do that… Read more »

Ciara
Guest
Ciara

People hair is natural curly no products needed and do you go to work without makeup or hair products.

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[…] when Blacks dress in a way deemed acceptable by White society, they’re still ostracized for the texture of their hair, or the way they spell their names, or even their hand gestures. These things […]

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[…] as I have to keep reading stories about schools expelling Black girls for wearing natural hair or banning african hairstyles or the military banning braids and afros…I cannot take the “hair struggles,” of a […]

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[…] cultures and spaces. For example, there are numerous tales of black women and girls who have been criticised for or prevented from wearing natural hairstyles to work and school, such as braids, twists or afro‐puffs. While it […]

Jennifer
Guest
Jennifer

I don’t know much about different races and the struggles each individual goes through in order to be presentable in public. Maybe the real problem is too much use of products in order to get an end result? What would happen if schools required everyone, staff, teachers and students to show up without makeup or products in their hair?

Jocelyn Butler
Guest
Jocelyn Butler

Our hair is naturally puffy. So, without products we can’t achieve the flat, straight hair they want. The school is asking children of color to put products and do unnatural things to their hair to be perceived as “normal” or professional

Jessica Cutler Saunders
Guest
Jessica Cutler Saunders

This is discrimination! Who do we call to raise hell on this.

Honey
Guest
Honey

Call the administration from 2013, when this happened.

CYW
Guest
CYW

Draft version? They didn’t send home draft version. They sent the FINAL version. Nice try.

Somalia Gullette
Guest
Somalia Gullette

What knocks me out is that this school has the word “science” in its name. Science studies (among other things) Biology & Chemistry. These two branches of science would tell you that natural hair is not a style. It comes from genetics. Quite frankly, if a “science academy” is that stupid, maybe our kids shouldn’t attend that school.

Helena_Handbasket
Guest
Helena_Handbasket

Honestly, I’m not sure anybody’s kids should attend that school. Not having any black kids around just means that the ones aren’t black will be more susceptable to picking up on other people’s bullshit ideas about black people. The two cities I’ve lived in the most are Omaha and Colorado Springs. While Omaha didn’t have official “Jim Crow” laws, conspiracies by realators kept all the African Americans in the North End of town and all the immigrants in the South East. Colorado Springs, on the otherhand, due to expanding mostly with military, has everyone living pretty much mixed up where… Read more »

Kim Ber Lee
Guest
Kim Ber Lee

Our hair grows up and out because it is our crown.

As for the school lying that this was a draft copy, it is only stated as such because without any backlash it would have remained that way. Whites are always going to find fault in our existence and everything about us. Always fight for your right to be you.

Akilah Arthur
Guest
Akilah Arthur

This is what happens when you have no poc decision‐makers on your staff. I can’t imagine that someone with kinky hair would’ve signed off on this. But this specific issue aside– no fake glasses? no multicolored wrist bans? no long hair for boys? Lawd, let these kids breath!

Elliott Mason
Guest

That “repeal the ban” letter doesn’t actually repeal the ban. It just engages in a classic “I’m so sorry that you took offense to this totally normal thing we did, why are you yelling at us so unreasonably?!?” defense without making any statement that shows they understand what happened at all.

Zuhuru
Guest
Zuhuru

RAmember, (spelled correctly, if you know your Afrikan History), it’s not the WHAT (what the hair looks like), rather it’s the WHY (Why did God assign this special hair to these particular people) that gets others in a tizzy! Speaking of Science and research, If African (Includes African‐American) people understood the REASON God gave us this hair; and there is a specific reason, not just for show, not just because it looks different; there is a FUNCTIONAL scientific reason we have this type of hair! If you don’t know, research it! READ, READ, READ until you know. Once you know,… Read more »

Jasmine Moore
Guest
Jasmine Moore

Some African culture believe that our hair works as an “antenna” to connect to our ancestors. Hair also showed status. The more elaborate the hair the higher in social status.

Melody Writes
Guest
Melody Writes

I would still remove my child from the school.

Zaidi
Guest
Zaidi

This shouldn’t be an argument. It’s an assault on black children, and the black community. It’s exactly why we had the ‘Black Panthers nearly 50 years ago’!!

Elena
Guest
Elena

this might actually be the dumbest thing i have ever read.…who the hell is the school to dictate how one can or can not wear their hair?

AyoDle Rhodes
Guest
AyoDle Rhodes

Exactly but they let these lil white kids com to school wit purple n green n blue colored hair but thats acceptable

Chloe Chloe
Guest
Chloe Chloe

This is the time. To say no

AyoDle Rhodes
Guest
AyoDle Rhodes

They so jealous n envious of us itz sickening but yet they try n copy us evry chance they git our style our skin color or style of dance they’re true hypocrites all across the board they wanna control us so bad as they did our grandparents n great grandparents they wanna take our voice away at any cost.…petty on all levels

Carlos Louhisdon
Guest
Carlos Louhisdon

My only question is why did this article or letter take so long to be outed to the national public it’s only October 2015 and this letter was written June of 2013. I use to sport my Locks for personal reasons I decided to cut it. That is totally ridiculous that someone would even write such a letter to the parents. Since this took place two years ago what follow up has been done to see if this new ordinance was being enforced or whether it was repealed. Anyone!.

Annette Saggitarius Annette
Guest
Annette Saggitarius Annette

I hope lawsuits were filed because this is blatant discrimination on a race of people. Plus, I hope every black parent sent their children to school the next day rocking puffs and braids…it’s our hairstyle!!…What was the follow up? Does anyone know?

Denise Collins
Guest
Denise Collins

Draft copy my ass! I worked in a School District for many years and trust and BELIEVE this was NOT a DRAFT copy as they assuage! Whatever is sent out is a FINAL COPY unless otherwise noted! Nice try though.….…

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[…] feel the rule is racist.Black Girl With Long Hair, explains why the afro puff and braid ban is particularly offensive to parents and students:“The dress code restrictions highlight an age‐old struggle that naturals […]

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[…] should not be punished, or banned for wearing our natural hair.  I love what Leila, founder of Black Girl Long Hair had to say in response to the […]

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[…] this really is the case at Horizon Science Academy (according to the blog Black Girl With Long Hair, the new prohibitions came in a letter to parents about next year’s dress code that was […]

Celeste Bianco
Guest
Celeste Bianco

I’m glad folks put pressure on these idiots and got them to back down. Got to tell you, I am white (oh hell, let’s just call it what it is…I’m pasty), and I love black women’s hair. People should be able to wear their hair or their clothes any damned way they please. I’ve been fighting against dress codes since 1967. WHY is this still even a thing? You wear your hair any damned way you please, and if they don’t like it, to hell with them. (But if you need help, I’ll hold ‘em while you slap ‘em upside… Read more »

kerinbot
Guest
kerinbot

supposedly the ban was never supposed to be for girls, but to prevent young males from having the longer hair styles described (though that could be just some quick ass‐covering). Even so, even given that it is an institution trying to maintain a certain college‐bound atmosphere, that seems unnecessarily gender‐limiting and unfair. I’m glad they are responding at least somewhat gracefully to the pressure and public outcry.

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[…] women in America, the option to remove the costume simply does not exist. Black girls are being shamed in schools for styles specific to black culture.  Black women feel uncomfortable in the workplace […]

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[…] Ohio School Bans Afro Puffs and Braids […]

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[…] Check out the full story at Black Girl Long Hair. […]

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