Indiana faculty principal provides college students a haircut quite than self-discipline after boy despatched to his workplace for carrying a hat (video)
TSR Positive Images: Kindness and understanding are of great importance, especially when it comes to children. In a country where black students are disproportionately disciplined and criminalized because of their black features, an Indiana school principal saw an opportunity to help his student instead of punishing him.
It all started when middle school student Anthony Moore was sent to Jason Smith’s office at Stonybrook Intermediate and Middle School in Indianapolis for wearing a hat that violated the school’s dress code. I sat across from him and asked, ‘What is it? Why are you defiant, why do you refuse to take off your hat? It’s a pretty simple request, ”Smith told CNN. “And he explained that his parents took him to get his hair cut and that he didn’t like the results.”
Director Smith said that while he and a school dean thought Anthony’s hair looked good, he understood that social acceptance is more important to a boy his age than adult acceptance. “I said to him, ‘Look, I’ve cut hair since I was your age,’ and I showed him pictures of my son’s haircuts that I did and some of me that got haircuts in college. And I said, “If I run home and get my clipper and fix your line, will you go back to class?” Smith said. “He hesitated, but then he said yes.”
From there, Smith drove home in the snow to get his clipper and brought it to his office to straighten Anthony’s head while his parents were asked for permission to touch up his hair.
Anthony’s mother, Tawanda Johnson, said she found the director’s gesture wonderful.
“He (Smith) did a very good job of keeping him from getting into trouble at school,” said Johnson. “I’m just glad he got through it without … being suspended from school.”
Smith noted the importance of hair to black students.
“He didn’t say directly, but I have a feeling he didn’t mean to be laughed at,” said Smith. “The hair salon and haircuts as black men are very important in the community, and looking good and being sharp is just a cultural aspect.”
He continued, “Just because I’m a black man myself and I’m going through that culture and you know I really think girls are important at that age, which then means. He was afraid he would be laughed at and we were pretty sure no one would notice, but he was looking through his lens, ”said Smith.
Smith said he had been looking for Anthony all day and found he was studying and not wearing a hat after the mending.
“All behavior is communication, and when a student is having problems we have to wonder what happened to that child rather than what is wrong with the child,” said Smith. “What does the child need to meet and the future of urban education really depends on this question.”
Smith added that the consequence for not following the dress code would normally have been suspension at school or being picked up by a parent, but Smith said that “it would have prevented him from standing in front of a class teacher and giving him the education deserved it so it worked out really well. “
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