West Texas Girl Faces Punishment at School for Unique Hair Style
Cadence Boyle, a 12-year-old girl from Rankin, Texas, was placed in ISS (in school suspension) for having an "unusual" hairstyle: part of her hair is long, and the other is shaved.
Rankin ISD told the family that she would not be able to return to class until she has shaved her entire head, or figured out a way to hide the bald part.
Cadence has zero desire to shave her entire head, and her parents believe it's quite cruel to expect her to do so. Cadence loves learning and going to school, but unless she is willing to shave her entire head, she will not be allowed to participate in regular class, must stay in lunch detention, and she will be missing things like band concerts, UIL, football, and the Texas Math and Science Coaches Association, a competition with scholarship opportunities. Kids that are in trouble at school are not allowed to participate is any groups clubs or extracurricular activities. Cadence will be banned from all school functions as long as she refuses to finish shaving her head.
Her mother, Jocelyn, believes that Cadence has been the victim of bullying in the small-town school district, long before this incident with her hair, often pertaining to her gender identity and sexuality. Cadence has been an advocate for the LGBTQ+ community since she arrived at the new school. Even though Rankin ISD is covered in anti-bullying posters, Cadence has been bullied. Badly.
"Cadence is also known for going out of her way to protect two autistic boys in her grade from being the victim of bullying," Her mother told 94.5 FMX.
Cadence thought that the haircut would help to express her binary gender, in that half of it was long and half of it was short, combining both traditional male and female hairstyles. Her supportive parents were more than willing to allow their daughter to simply be herself, but they were not shocked at the response they received from the school in regard to the new haircut.
A letter was sent to her mother to explain why the school felt like they had to suspend her, but it really doesn't make a ton of sense.
Read the district's letter, signed by Rankin High School's principal, assistant principal and a counselor, below:
What year is it in Rankin, Texas? 1950?
The style itself is also quite popular all over the United States and can be seen in nearly every magazine and television show. It isn't shocking. It isn't distracting. It's just a hairstyle. Remember beehives? Now those are distracting. You can't even see over them. This haircut? Nah.
Cadence's mom Jocelyn shared her response to the school's letter:
Cadence, however, isn't letting the drama get to her, remaining positive about the situation and her style choices.
"It gives me more confidence about my looks and it makes me feel like I actually have the haircut I was always meant to have," she told 94.5 FMX. "I don't only like this haircut because of my gender, but also because it makes me feel like that with my hair I'm saying all men, women and all other genders are equal and should all be treated equally."
Fun fact: I actually lived in Rankin. For me, it was a complete and utter hellhole. I was probably the oddest ball in town during my three-year stint, and I could not wait to get away from the most closed-minded people I have ever met in my life. It's no surprise that an issue as silly as a haircut suspension has come across my desk from that terrible place, and I jumped at the opportunity to share Cadence's story with you all.
What do you think about the dress code? Comment below or on the 94.5 FMX Facebook page and give us your thoughts on whether or not a haircut is worthy of suspension. (It's not.)