National/World

School threatens to expel girl over natural hair

Tuesday, November 26, 2013
Vanessa VanDyke

A 12-year-old Florida girl is vowing not to alter her hairstyle despite her private school's demand to change it -- or be expelled.

Vanessa VanDyke says she was given one week to decide on whether to cut or tone down her hair, or leave Faith Christian Academy in Orlando.

She says the ultimatum came after she approached school administrators to complain that she was being teased.

"I'm depressed about leaving my friends and people that I've known for a while, but I'd rather have that than the principals and administrators picking on me and saying that I should change my hair," she said.

"I'm going to fight for my daughter. If she wants her hair like that, she will keep her hair like that. There are people out there who may think that natural hair is not appropriate. She is beautiful the way she is," Sabrina Kent said.

Faith Christian Academy has a dress code and rules against how students can wear their hair. The student handbook says, "Hair must be a natural color and must not be a distraction."

The school has refused to comment directly on this case.

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