By Sheryl Estrada
An assistant principal at Coronado Middle School in Plainview, Texas, allegedly used a marker to color in a shaved part of Kobi Esquivel’s head last week. The assistant principal claimed his haircut violated the school’s dress code and could be gang-related.
Kobi’s mother, Monica Esquivel, said her son had had the haircut for about five months, and school administrators did not contact her when the assistant principal decided to draw on his head. In confronting administrators, the Latina mother said she was told the haircut could be considered gang-related.
“My son is not in a gang, he’s not trying to be in a gang,” Esquivel told KCBD-TV. “He dresses in khakis, a shirt, not in loose pants or anything, just real nice and casual. He isn’t representing a gang or anything.”
She believes her son’s haircut does not violate the school’s dress code as outlined in the student handbook.
“And when I got copies of the dress code, on there it says designs shaved through the head, but I said, ‘It’s not a design, it’s the haircut,'” Esquivel said. “The style that’s coming out is the comb-over.”
Plainview Independent School District Executive Director for Administrative Services Greg Brown released this statement:
“I can’t comment on the details of the specific incident you mentioned due to confidentiality. Our dress code prohibits designs shaved into the scalp and this includes lines. The dress code is a part of the parent/student handbook that is made available to all students online and in paper form (if requested). Each year in the spring and early summer the handbook is edited and developed to get it ready for the next school year. The dress code is specifically looked at by the administration, which makes any changes that need to be made. In its final recommended form, the handbook is presented to the School Board for approval, usually in July.”
Regarding the specifics of the incident, Brown said the following:
“I can’t comment on it, but I can tell you whenever we have a concern, Plainview ISD addresses those concerns with our administration and our staff and our students. Any concerns or practices that affect our kids will always be addressed. We encourage parents to communicate with us whenever concerns arise.”
After Esquivel spoke with administrators, they decided to allow Kobi time to grow his hair out to cover the shaved line.