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Two atramentous changeable acceptance accessory a allotment academy in Massachusetts were afresh kicked off their sports teams and banned from accessory a brawl because they wore their beard in braids. The Mystic Valley Regional Allotment Academy in Malden, about 9 afar from Boston, enforces a austere dress cipher preventing acceptance from cutting their beard in any aberrant way, which includes braids.
Twin acceptance Maya and Deanna Cook, African-American sophomores, told bounded account outlets they were aboriginal told to booty their braids out two weeks ago by academy officials. The girls’ adoptive mother, Colleen Cook, told Boston’s 25 Account that she accustomed a alarm from the academy allegorical her that acceptance weren’t accustomed to abrasion “anything bogus or aberrant in their hair.”
“We told them there’s annihilation amiss with their beard the way it is. Their beard is beautiful, there’s no acclimation that needs to be done,” Colleen Cook said, abacus that the beard action seems to ambition alone acceptance of color, who abrasion their beard in braids or extensions absorption their African-American culture.
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The dress cipher action listed on the school’s website says acceptance cannot abrasion “drastic or aberrant beard colors or styles such as baldheaded curve or baldheaded abandon or accept a hairstyle that could be confusing to added acceptance (extra-long beard or beard added than 2 inches in array or acme is not allowed). This agency no coloring, dying, abating (sun-in) or streaking of any sort. Beard extensions are not allowed. Beard elastics charge be beat in the beard and not on the wrist.”
After two weeks of circadian apprehension for abnegation to booty bottomward their braids, Colleen Cook said, the girls were told they could not appear the prom and were removed from their sports teams.
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The Cook girls are aloof two of abounding atramentous and biracial acceptance who accept been subjected to circadian apprehension because of dress cipher violations at the school. Added parents told 25 Account that their accouchement had additionally been abeyant for cutting braids, and afterward the latest Cook sisters punishment, atramentous acceptance were singled out for a beard inspection.
“All the little atramentous accouchement were marched bottomward for a beard inspection, whether they had braids or not, and asked, ‘Are those extensions, are your braids absolute or not?’” Colleen Cook said.
Alexander Dan, the school’s acting director, said in a account that the dress cipher action aims to serve a “diverse apprentice population” that fosters “a ability that emphasizes apprenticeship rather than style, appearance or materialism. Our action on beard extensions, which tend to be actual expensive, is constant with, and a allotment of, the educational ambiance that we accept is so important to our students’ success.”
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The Mystic Valley Regional Allotment Academy is aloof one of abounding such schools that accept appear beneath blaze for administration dress cipher behavior that prohibit braids and added hairstyles adumbrative of African-American culture. In 2016, Butler High Academy in Louisville, Kentucky, was accused of implementing a racist dress cipher action afterwards it banned acceptance from cutting dreadlocks, blah rows and braids. The academy adapted the arguable beard action afterward a flood of acknowledgment from outraged parents, including accompaniment Representative Attica Scott, a Democrat, who took to amusing media to adjudge the school.
In 2014, the U.S. aggressive faced a astringent backfire afterwards banning natural hairstyles like dreadlocks and twists.
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