Outdated School Rules Cause Controversy: Mom Fights for Son’s Hair

'Outdated, punishing rules' - Mom fights for son, 8, to keep his long hair despite schools rejecting him

Remember our school days? A mix of happy and sad memories, filled with highs and lows. But one thing we all remember is those school rules. Some made sense, like no jewelry during sports. However, sending kids home for wearing too much makeup or sneaking in a soda seems like a waste of time and resources. These rigid rules often clash with the period in a child’s life when they want to be different and express themselves.

Now, imagine an 8-year-old boy being denied a good education simply because of his long hair. Meet Farouk James, the London-born child model with a stunning head of hair that has caught the attention of modeling scouts worldwide. Despite his success as a model, Farouk has faced rejection from multiple schools due to his hair length.

Farouk’s mother, Bonnie Miller, explains that for cultural reasons, they didn’t cut his hair until he was 3 years old. Bonnie, who herself is attached to her son’s beautiful hair, adds, “We’re just keeping the hair.” Unfortunately, most schools in the U.K. have policies that allow girls to have long hair but not boys.

Forcing children to conform to these appearance rules goes against their human rights, according to Bonnie. Determined to make a change, she wrote on Instagram, “I will not give up trying to persuade governments to put legislation in place to protect children from these outdated, punishing rules.” She has even started a petition on Change.org to ban hair discrimination in the U.K. Bonnie and Farouk, along with their supporters named the “Mane Generation,” are determined to fight for a global change in these unfair rules.

Despite the love and support Farouk receives online, negative comments still find their way to his family. Bonnie wrote about it last year, stating, “Farouk’s hair is a God-given part of him, and he will not be cutting it to appease anyone.” She argues that appearance rules for boys and girls are archaic and sometimes even racist, with schools banning dreadlocks and braids.

Farouk’s hair is an integral part of his identity. Rejecting a child based on their hair is simply unacceptable in 2022. Bonnie will continue to fight for acceptance of Farouk and others who face discrimination for expressing their cultural heritage.