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Two Families Sue Louisiana School That Sent Black Students Home For Their Braids

Paula Rogo
Aug, 27, 2018 5:05 PM UTC

The family of the 11-year-old Black girl, who was sent home last week because her braided hair violated a school rule against hair extensions, is pursuing legal action against the school and school system.

The video of a teary-eyed Faith Fennidy being sent home for having worn her hair in thick braids with extensions to school went viral last week. The likes of rapper T.I. spoke out against her school, Christ The King School in Louisiana, for the newly implemented policy.

Now Fennidy’s family is joining forces with the family of another Christ The King School student, Tyrielle Davis, who was also removed from the classroom because of her hair. The two families plan to sue the school, citing a policy they say is discriminatory and adversely affects minority girls, NOLA.com reports.

The two families were successful last week in applying for a temporary restraining order against Christ the King, its principal Dawn Swear Castillo, and the Archdiocese of New Orleans to prevent them from enforcing the policy keeping their daughters out of class, Fox 8 in New Orleans reports.

The temporary order would be in place until the court decides whether it will place a preliminary and permanent injunction on the school to stop it from upholding its new policy.

In a statement, the families said their daughters were “called out and embarrassed” in front of their classmates for no reason other than their hair.

“The rule about hair care for students was created without the consideration of anyone who is African American,” the statement said. “No person of color provided feedback to the rule before it was uniformly put in place by Christ the King School and the Archdiocese of New Orleans.”

The superintendent for the Archdiocese of New Orleans’ Office of Catholic Schools, RaeNell Billiot Houston, defended the school’s decision in a statement last week saying that parents were notified of the new policy over the summer and before the school year begun.

“Furthermore, the school leadership worked with families as needed to ensure compliance,” he told NBC News.

ESSENCE reached out to Christ The King School last week, but didn’t immediately hear back.

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