TYLER, Texas — A superintendent reportedly told a woman her grandson either had to cut his long hair, braid it or come to school wearing a dress, according to KETK.
Monday night, parents swarmed the Tyler Independent School District board meeting in protest to the policy which some say discriminates against African American boys.
Randi Woodley, the teenager’s grandmother who has had custody of the boy since he was 4 months old, said her grandson found out the school had an issue with his hair during a Meet the Teacher meeting in August 2018, according to KETK.
The grandmother was also called in to meet the principal where she was told his hair was too long.
Woodley said the superintendent told her in a one-on-one meeting that either he could cut his hair, braid it or come to school in a dress and claim he is a girl, KETK reports.
Per school policy, “no ponytails, ducktails, rat-tails, male buns, or puffballs are allowed on male students,” and male students’ hair “shouldn’t extend past the top of a t-shirt collar.”
Another parent, Kambry Cox, said a school told her kindergarten son Kellan that he could not have a ponytail.
“With my son’s dreadlocks, sometimes they do fall in front of his face, so I felt it would be easier to put his hair up, but then that’s a problem,” Cox said, according to KETK.
The parents believe that telling a young boy to change his hair sends a problematic message that their natural hair is bad.
The superintendent reportedly declined to comment.