Five-year-old sent home from kinder for ‘distracting’ haircut, parents file discrimination complaint

It’s the haircut that’s created a furore – with a school deeming it ‘distracting’, and a mother claiming racial discrimination. 

Five-year-old Jalyn Broussard saw a basketball player sporting a fresh new haircut – a ‘modern fade’ where the top of the hair is long and the sides short, and his mum obliged.

According to The Daily Beast, when Jayln turned up to his kindergarten, the Immaculate Heart of Mary School in Belmont, California, his principal told him it was a nice haircut. However, his mother says just half an hour after drop-off, she was asked to pick up Jayln, with his teacher saying the hairstyle violated the school policy.

His parents reportedly shaved his head that night, so he would be allowed to attend his Christmas concert. His mum, Mariana Broussard says, “I thought I misheard when they told me to pick him up. It’s something that’s so small but it represents something larger. He had increased visibility to these teachers.”


Ms Broussard has pulled Jalyn and his brother Noah from the school and last week filed a racial discrimination complaint with the US Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights. She claims the school labelled her son’s haircut ‘extreme’ and ‘distracting’, but approved similar styles on white and Asian students.

“If there was such a blatant double standard when we’re dealing something as insignificant as a haircut, what happens in the classroom?” Broussard tells The Daily Beast. “How can we trust them with our child’s education and well-being?”

The Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights is representing the case for the family – and is calling for tuition reimbursement and cultural sensitivity training for the school’s staff.

A spokesman for the Archdiocese said it would not discuss facts of the case pending the legal action. But according to the school’s rules, extreme hairstyles are not allowed. That includes “feathers, foils, tinsel, bling strands, hi-lites, faux hawks, tails and spiking.”

The haircut controversy is the latest in a long list of parents taking action after being told their kids are breaking the rules. Take a look at our previous posts of the dad who hit back when told it was against the rules to let his kids skip school and the mum who saw red when her child’s school insisted girls wear t-shirts over bathers at a swimming event.

(via The Daily Beast)

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