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PostPosted: Fri Jun 17, 2011 12:09 pm 
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http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-london-13803106
Being a very ignorant middle aged white woman I had never realised that cornrowed hair was part of gang culture. I always thought it kept Afro-Caribbean hair attractively neat for school, although I have to admit, I don't think it suits fine European hair as it always looks to me as if it's about to break off at the roots.

I don't see a problem with the hair style being worn for school and would have been happy to see the school's decision judged as unlawful. Equally - I think that if you want your child to go to a particular school, and its dress code is widely available before application is made, then parents should ensure the child keeps to it - so I suppose I could have justified the court upholding the school's decision just as easily.

This judgement, however, means that schools will have to judge each case on its merits - but without giving them the criteria to do so. How is a headteacher or board of governors meant to decide what is 'cultural' and what is 'individual' - and surely some families are 'cross cultural'? And really, if children are allowed to celebrate their 'cultural identity' then why aren't they allowed to celebrate their 'individual identity'?

I think it's a judgement that is going to cause more trouble than it solves - but I'm still not sure which judgement would have been better ....


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 17, 2011 12:27 pm 
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Location: Maidstone
I wonder how much this case cost? What a waste, its just cornrow and just a normal hairstyle. I don't see what the fuss from the school was about.

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 17, 2011 1:00 pm 
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I think cornrow hairstyles look fine ... provided they are not too long and the ends are neat.

I remember a hotel in the West Indies where the managers were struggling to stop the women emplyees turning up with their hair in curlers - used to be quite the fashion there particularly if you had a nice matching set!


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 17, 2011 1:06 pm 
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I worry that the boy's idol is David Beckham. But his hair is neat and looks fine.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 17, 2011 1:09 pm 
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Location: Maidstone
menagerie wrote:
I worry that the boy's idol is David Beckham.


He might be hinting at getting tattoes next :lol:

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 17, 2011 1:16 pm 
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sherry_d wrote:
menagerie wrote:
I worry that the boy's idol is David Beckham.


He might be hinting at getting tattoes next :lol:
Well - the school DD is going to in September has an 'acceptable tongue-piercing' policy so maybe a tasteful tattoo in the school colours would be ok as well?

Been wondering what hairstyle best reflects my own family's cultural identity? Presumably something with woad? Daughter got blue space putty in her hair recently - maybe I should have left it there?


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 17, 2011 3:06 pm 
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its a difficult one here.
Am African but where I come from, its frowned upon for boys to corn row their hair.
Corn row for us is a way of keeping girls hair neat and tidy.

However we get our little girls ears pierced before they are seven days old as they usually do not cry and the piercing heals within a couple of days. For us its a symbol that one has a baby girl, thats the first thing people look at to determine the sex of your child.

I had issues with my children's school saying girls should not wear earrings to school for health and safety reasons. I had to go and explain its part of our culture and if the earrings are not worn continuously the piercing can close up and it will be much more painful for them to pierce them when they are older. They agreed on the basis that my girls wear tiny - earrings.

Its really hard to embrace all the cultural diversity but I think dialogue could have solved the issue rather than the court.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 17, 2011 3:48 pm 
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'acceptable tongue-piercing' :shock:

Wonder whether they considered a medical practitioners advice on this before declaring it even remotely acceptable.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 17, 2011 4:02 pm 
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What or who determines a 'cultutal hairstyle'? I also didn't know it was meant to symbolise gang culture, or that it was called corn row. I always thought it was worn like this for fashion.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 17, 2011 6:32 pm 
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I can see where the school is coming from. In a case like this, the onus should be on the parents/guardians to contact the school to clarify where they stand before sending the child to that school. After all, they must have received the school's code of conduct and dress code beforehand. They clearly didn't read it (or assumed it was there for decorative purposes) and so a school is undermined. Imo the challenge came too late.


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