With all the tragic things that happen in schools around the nation, one would think administrators would be strictly focused on actual security concerns. Instead, one Oklahoma high school seems more intent on dictating their students’ fashion decisions.
According to local Oklahoma news affiliate News on 6, Emerson High School student Sarah Bonacci was sent home by her vice principal after arriving to school with a bright-red hairdo.
“[They said] she can’t come to school because her hair is a Ronald McDonald red, and it’s not,” said Vanessa Tucker, the student’s mother.
Administrators said that Bonacci’s new look violated the school’s dress code policy, which does explicitly mention hair color.
“Hair must be of natural color. NO RED, BLUE, PINK, PURPLE, etc.,” the Emerson dress code boldly states.
Tucker thinks the school is being foolish, and considers her daughter’s hairstyle to be natural-looking, thus excusing her from the dress code’s hair color regulations.
“[The vice president] had told her that she could come back in six months when she could color it back to her natural color,” said Tucker.
“If her hair was blue, green, purple, orange, like a clown, I can understand, or red like he thinks her hair is,” she added. “I don’t feel that her hair color is an unnatural hair color.”
About 38% of people change their hair color to feel more confident, though it seems like the young teen was innocuously trying to fit in with the new trend of colorful hairstyles among celebrities.
According to Hollywood Life, global superstar Katy Perry is known for her ever-changing hair color. She says that her favorite dye colors are “grunge green” and “shocking blue,” two colors that would surely be frowned upon by Emerson administrators.
Tucker said that she was told her daughter would either have to re-dye her hair or wear a wig to school, which upset the teen even more.
“She was in tears,” said Tucker.
A spokesperson for Oklahoma City Schools said that “the district has conducted a preliminary investigation into the incident and determined that Emerson’s policy regarding dyed hair will be administratively reviewed.”
Tucker wants every day her daughter is being forced to miss to be excused from her absentee record.