Fury as Birmingham school bans girl from playground and canteen over 'racist' hair policy

20 January 2023, 20:37

Jade Samuels said her daughter&squot;s school has a "racist" hair policy
Jade Samuels said her daughter's school has a "racist" hair policy. Picture: Twitter/Google Maps
Kieran Kelly

By Kieran Kelly

A furious mum has slammed her daughter's school after she was "banned from the playground and canteen for her hair", branding the policy "racist".

Jade Samuels took to social media to complain about Bishop Challoner's hair policy, which she claims has meant her daughter is banned from parts of the school.

She said: "My child is banned from the school playground [and] canteen for her hair.

"It's neatly braided in a natural colour, I gave them a lesson on the history of black women's hairs cultural significance of braiding.

"They chose violence. Bishop Challoner has a racist hair policy!!!"

Ms Samuels later clarified that the school's problem was with the heart braided into her daughter's head.

She continued: "Just for clarity, the issue the school has is with the heart, as if that makes it any less bad."

Ms Samuels and her daughter have been inundated with support from people on Twitter, with several users calling out the school's policy.

Emma Williams said: "Jade this is appalling. Her hair is neat and tidy, tied back away from her face (so safe for science etc) and a natural colour.

"The only inappropriate thing here is the attitude of the school."

Natalie Ann Jamieson added: "I’m livid for you Jade. Hope she’s ok. Glad this is getting the attention it deserves and hope it helps brings about a change in school policies."

A statement from the Birmingham school read: "Bishop Challoner Catholic College is very clear that braids are allowed to be worn in school.

"If parents/carers have any issues, there are clear procedures in place which they can follow for their concerns to be addressed.

"The decision has been made that if shaved patterns are not permitted for students, then a braided pattern cannot be permitted on that basis."

Hair policies which ban certain styles without making exceptions on racial grounds "are likely to be unlawful", the Equality and Human Rights Commission ruled in October.

This covers a number of hair styles, including braids, plaits, locks and head coverings.