Texas teen suspended from school over hairstyle, files lawsuit against Governor Greg Abbott

ByAdarsh Kumar Gupta
Sep 25, 2023 06:53 AM IST

Darryl's family has alleged failure to enforce the state’s CROWN Act, a law that prohibits discrimination over hairstyles.

A 17-year-old student named Darryl George, studying at Barbers Hill High School in Mont Belvieu in Texas, who was suspended over his hairstyle, has filed lawsuit against Governor Greg Abbott and the Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton. Darryl's family has alleged failure to enforce the state’s CROWN Act, a law that prohibits discrimination over hairstyles that are “commonly or historically associated with race.”

Darryl George(X(formerly Twitter)/@njcampbell1)
Darryl George(X(formerly Twitter)/@njcampbell1)

Barbers Hill Independent School District has defended the school's action against Darryl arguing that he often wears his hair in braids or a ponytail which is a violation of dress code for male students.

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According to a report by CNN, the policy does not prohibit students from wearing locs or braids. But it places limitations on hair length for male students. As per policy, hair cannot be worn in a style “that would allow the hair to extend below the top of a t-shirt collar, below the eyebrows, or below the ear lobes when let down.”

Through the lawsuit, Darryl's family is seeking an injunction against Abbott and Paxton to direct them to stop the district from taking disciplinary action against students over their hairstyles.

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Earlier, the district had requested a Texas court to clarify if its dress code violates the CROWN Act.

“Although we believe the new law does not govern hair length, we are asking the judicial system of Texas to interpret,” Barbers Hill Superintendent Greg Poole said in a statement on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, Darryl's family has alleged that they have been told Darryl will be sent to a Disciplinary Alternative Education Program, also known as an alternative school, if he denies to cut his hair. As per CNN, there exists family's emotional connection to the hair as Darryl's locs are intertwined with strands from his grandfather and father, due to which they don't want to remove it.

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