Christian School Says Black Girl's Hairstyle Isn't 'Natural,' Sends Her Home: Video
UPDATE: Aug. 29, 2018
After a social media video went viral showing Christ the King Elementary School student Faith Fennidy being sent home crying because the school rejected her hair extensions, the school announced on Monday it has withdrawn its policy that “Only the student’s natural hair is permitted.”
“School officials said when the issue arose, they immediately reviewed the policy and recognized that there may have been sensitivities that needed to be addressed,” according to WDSU.
Fennidy and another student who showed up to Christ the King in Terrytown, La., with hair extensions are now able to return to school after their attorney filed an injunction.
“Neither family have yet to do so,” reports WVUE.
A Facebook video, showing a Black girl in tears when she learned Christ the King Elementary school in Louisiana was sending her home because of her braided hair extensions, has gone viral.
Steven Fennidy, posted the video of his sister, Faith, which has garnered more than 700,000 views since Monday, and described her ordeal. He said, in part:
“My sister Faith and many little Black girls wear extensions. She’s been attending this school for two years and wearing extensions. Over the summer, the school has sneakily added in a policy that no extensions, clip-ins or weaves are allowed. “Faith got a notice on the first day of class and it’s ridiculous that these schools that we are PAYING for, will go in and make policies without consulting or trying to figure out how this will affect your life or your child’s life.
“Extensions make the hair easier to maintain. It allows my sister to have access to the swimming pool without having to get her hair redone every night. How do you make a policy without even having a discussion”
The Archdiocese of New Orleans, said in a statement, to WGNO that Christ the King has a policy that for both boys and girls, “only the student’s natural hair is permitted. This policy was communicated to all parents during the summer and again before the first day of school and was applied to all students.
“Furthermore, the school leadership worked with families to ensure compliance. We remain committed to being a welcoming school community that celebrates our unity and diversity.” In an attempt to comply with the policy, Faith had gotten her braided hair extensions redone last week.
But that wasn’t good enough for the school.
“The new hairstyle was still not in compliance with the new hairstyle policy,” Archdiocese Catholic Schools Superintendent RaeNell Billiot Houston told the news channel.
Family members told WWL-TV on Monday the school implemented the new policy over the summer and did not notify them about the change. They are looking into seeking legal action against the school for discrimination.
“The policy prohibiting extensions, wigs and other hairpieces does not appear in parent-student handbooks for the two previous years,” according to the news channel.
The Times-Picayune reports Montrelle Fennidy, said on Tuesday, that her 11-year-old daughter Faith, is no longer a student at Christ the King, and she’s in the process of finding a new school for the 6th grader.
Atlanta-based rapper and activist T.I. also shared the video on his Instagram page, where it has received more than 450,000 views. He said, in part:
“Christ the King school in Gretna, La., you are deplorable!!! A true disgrace to the very thing your school’s name says it represents. How do you feel that this is a proper representation of what Jesus Christ the King and how he would want us to treat our children
“You should be ashamed of yourselves … although I know you aren’t. This young lady is beautiful and her hair is perfectly fine. Unless, of course, you have an issue with Black people’s hair in general”
T.I. offered Faith’s parents assistance:
“Parents, please let me know if there’s ANY WAY POSSIBLE for me to be helpful.”