Earlier this week, 7-year-old Tiana Parker was sent home from the Deborah Brown Community School because of her dreadlocks were deemed a faddish hairstyle and unacceptable according to the school’s policy. During an interview with the local news station, Tiana is seen crying because she didn’t understand why her hair was considered so “bad”. Tiana’s father, Terrance Parker, removed his straight-A student from the school.
“She went to the school last year and didn’t have any problems,” said Parker.
Parker said her hair looked the same.
“It hurt my feelings to the core,” said Parker.
“I think that they should let me have my dreads,” said Tiana.
Well Tiana isn’t the only one who thinks the school should let her have her dreads. Since her story broke, the outpouring of support for Tiana has been amazing.
But one gesture of support definitely stands out.
Dr. Yaba Blay, co-Director and Assistant Teaching Professor of Africana Studies at Drexel University, compiled letters of support and photos from women with dreadlocks. The e-book is nothing short of amazing. The outpouring of support from women from all walks of life, as well as letters from little girls Tiana’s age, goes to show that there’s nothing “faddish” about dreadlocks. The letters come from artists, doctors, and even acclaimed director Ava Duvernay. At the end of the book, Alice Walker allowed for a special message to be printed just for Tiana.
Tiana Parker will know that the love and support she has from around the world is amazing, but the love and support she received from her father will definitely shape her into an amazing young woman.