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Darryl George: A Judge in Texas Says that A School District Can Limit the Length of Natural Hair on Male Students!


CNS NewsIn a recent ruling, a Texas judge has determined that the state’s CROWN Act does not prohibit school dress codes from imposing limits on the length of male students’ natural hair. This decision marks a setback for Darryl George, a high school student from the Houston area, who filed a lawsuit against the Barbers Hill Independent School District after being suspended for months due to the length of his locs hairstyle.

Although George and his family did not appear in court following the trial, their attorneys have expressed intentions to appeal the ruling. Candice Matthews, a spokesperson for the family, conveyed George’s disappointment, anger, and confusion regarding the ruling, emphasizing the impact on his education and social experiences.

Superintendent Greg Poole of the Barbers Hill Independent School District hailed the ruling as validation that the district’s dress code aligns with the CROWN Act and does not infringe on students’ self-expression. He said the U.S. Supreme Court recently ruled that affirmative action violates the 14th Amendment, and he believes the CROWN Act will follow suit.

CNN reported that Poole said, “hair length of male students is only constitutionally protected for Native American students.” On September 1, 2023, the Texas CROWN Act banned hairstyle discrimination based on race or culture. Texas state Rep. Ron Reynolds, a CROWN Act co-author who testified for George, was disappointed by the verdict.

Darryl George: A Judge in Texas Says that A School District Can Limit the Length of Natural Hair on Male Students!

We won’t stop. We will speak truth to power,” Reynolds said, adding that lawmakers will file new hair-length legislation if George’s appeal fails. He said, “We know the bill’s purpose, the legislation is to protect students like Darryl. The Barbers Hill dress code allows locs but limits male students’ hair length. It says, “Boys’ hair will not extend below the eyebrows, ear lobes, or t-shirt collar.”

In September of last year, the school district asked the court to rule on whether the “Barbers Hill Independent School District’s dress and grooming code policy, which limits student hair length does not violate the CROWN Act.” George and his family have also sued school officials and Texas state leaders, including Gov. Greg Abbott, for failing to enforce state law and causing emotional distress.

George told reporters before the trial that being isolated and on in-school suspension for most of the year has been “very lonely.” “I started my dreads to feel connected to my people and ancestors,” George explained. It makes me angry, very angry… Despite all our years of fighting for Black History, we must do this again and again. It’s ridiculous.” His mother, Darresha, cried while thanking supporters “for making us stand strong.”

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Darryl George: A Judge in Texas Says that A School District Can Limit the Length of Natural Hair on Male Students!

CNN reported that Poole ran a full-page Houston Chronicle ad in January arguing that “being an American requires conformity with the positive benefit of unity.” Even if that means going all the way to the US Supreme Court, Barbers Hill ISD will keep making decisions to defend and uphold the community’s right to establish the norms and expectations for our school system, he stated in the advertisement.

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