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School counselor shaves student's head

florida distracting gang related not appropriate coercion

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#1 Hum

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Posted 15 January 2014 - 01:30

Lehigh, Florida -- A school’s student counselor, and assistant principal reportedly shaved a Miami Heat tribute out of 11-year old Danny Valdes’ head without permission from his parents, after assuring the child’s stepfather (who runs a barbershop and gave the kid the haircut in anticipation of attending his first Miami Heat game) that Danny would be allowed to have his stepfather alter the haircut.

From NBC 6 in South Florida:

    Valdes’ head was designed by his stepfather, who owns a barbershop, for a Miami Heat game that he attended. His head was designed with the Miami Heat logo, Miami skyline and 305 writing.

    "I wanted to get my hair like that to show how proud I am of my Heat," Valdes told NBC 2.

    Valdes attended the Miami Heat game during his winter break but kept the haircut when he returned to school last week.

    The assistant principal then called the boy's stepfather, Arnaldo Fernadez, to notify him.

    "I told her when he gets home from school I'll cut his hair and I'll make it toward their regulations," Fernandez said.

    A school counselor then shaved the student’s hair with a pair of hair clippers so he could return to class, saying his stepfather said it was OK.

    The 11-year-old student agreed to the haircut so he wouldn't miss class, but his stepfather said he never gave the school permission.

The school said the haircut, which featured the Heat logo, Miami skyline, and 305 local area code, was “distracting” and “gang-related.” That whole “gang-related” part is probably news to 11-year old Danny Valdes, who can be seen in a video on this page, weirdly not involved in gang activity.

Why school administrators couldn’t have, at best, just let the kid have the haircut is beyond me. At worst, they could have let him serve out the in-school suspension for the next few hours – on the first day back from winter break, which as a father of an 11-year old I can assure you that precious little learning takes place on that first day back – and have his stepfather amend the haircut rather than basically shaving it off.

Here is the school’s response:

    "While the school counselor followed the wishes of the student and instructions of the student's stepfather that were provided over the phone in the presence of several witnesses, the district acknowledges the action taken by personnel were not appropriate."

So the 11-year old kid – stuck in an in-school suspension after being told that he was a distraction and that his haircut was “gang-related” – said it was OK to cut the hair. Yeah, we can’t imagine any feelings of coercion or pressure from a group of school administrators went into that young child’s decision.

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#2 Ambroos

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Posted 15 January 2014 - 01:42

While it's not the most classy haircut (and wouldn't have been allowed at any school I've been to school either, besides Uni ofc) the actions taken took it way too far. Just let the kid finish the day and go home. If it's not fixed the day after they could've gone further.



#3 OP Hum

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Posted 15 January 2014 - 01:46

I won't be surprised if this kid goes 'postal' at school, some day.



#4 Colicab

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Posted 18 January 2014 - 08:00

Its amazing how offended people become over children expressing themselves. And how ignorant they actually are to the people there jobs are formed around.

I was a bit of a rocker in school and came in with torn jeans, black etc and all ok in school dress code.

Was pulled into office and told by my assistant head that "i looked like a tramp".

No parents around.

Sadly I was young and naive, so much like the kid above I pretty much stood there and took it.

However if someone tried that with me as an adult, well God help them!!

#5 Anibal P

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Posted 18 January 2014 - 16:27

Easy lawsuit for the parents to win against the School, not only did they not have permission it is likely an illegal act and depending on how you read the laws, child abuse

Any half decent lawyer will have the school district begging for a settlement