A Black high school student in Texas was sent back to in-school suspension over his locs.
On Tuesday (Dec. 5), Darryl George, 18, was suspended for another 13 days at Barbers Hill High School in Mont Belvieu, Texas because his hair violates the dress code policy when let down, according to a disciplinary notice issued by the school.
George was initially pulled from the classroom in August after school officials said his locs were out of compliance, falling below his eyebrows and ear lobes. George’s family argued his punishment violated the CROWN Act, which became law in Texas in September and prohibits race-based hair discrimination.
The school claims that the CROWN Act doesn’t address hair length.
Tuesday was George’s first day back in school after he spent a month at an off-site disciplinary program. According to school officials, George was sent to the disciplinary program for violating the dress code and tardy policies, disrupting the in-school suspension classroom, and not following school directives.
District spokesperson David Bloom said George was told he would face another suspension if he refused to change his hair.
George’s family filed a formal complaint with the Texas Education Agency and a federal civil rights lawsuit against the state’s governor and attorney general along with the school district. The district has also filed a suit in state district court requesting it clarify whether its dress code policy on hair length violates the CROWN Act.
George has spent more than 80 percent of the school year outside his regular classroom.
“We are just trying to take it day by day. That’s all we can do,” his mother, Darresha George, told The Associated Press. “We do not see the light at the end of the tunnel. But we are not giving up.”