Sat | Aug 19, 2017

Hair police stuck in Dark Ages

Published:Wednesday | June 21, 2017 | 6:00 AM

THE EDITOR, Sir:

I am appalled that our schools are still mired in 19th-century values and ideas. What precisely is the goal being pursued by having 'a strict dress code'? I imagine the idea is to ensure that the school's uniform is correctly worn, in every detail, and I have no problem with that.

However, when it comes to issues of personal identity such as haircuts and hairstyles, why are teachers and school administrators interfering in what should be an issue for parents and their children? Why is it considered either necessary or valuable to decree the length at which young people can wear their hair?

WHY should young people not be able to wear the styles that are currently fashionable? There seems no useful purpose served by these kinds of rules except to browbeat young people into submission (witness the behaviour of those 'teachers' at Vauxhall) and to regiment them.

 

SUPPRESSING YOUTH

 

Are the powers that be so afraid of young people, their creativity, their energy and strength, their readiness to go in new and different directions, that they feel obliged to suppress their personalities and turn them all into ciphers?

It would seem that the educational establishment has not moved forward beyond the 1970s, when the Big Issue at the time was the Afro! Then, the girls' schools were in an uproar about whether girls should be allowed to wear their hair in its natural form, an issue that did NOT arise for Caucasian, Indian, or Chinese girls.

Do Jamaican teachers and administrators have nothing better to do, nothing more important to concern them, than the length of their pupils' hair?

It is time to put an end to the impunity of those teachers and administrators who break the laws of Jamaica, and violate the tenets of ordinary decency.

ANNIE ROSE KITCHIN

anniekitchin@gmail.com