The father of a 7-year-old Michigan girl whose hair was cut by a teacher without her parents’ permission filed a $1 million lawsuit against the school district, a librarian and a teacher’s aide.
Father sues school district for $1 million after staff cut his daughter’s hair
The lawsuit was filed Tuesday in federal court in Grand Rapids against Mount Pleasant Public Schools, MLive.com reported.
It alleges violations of the biracial girl’s constitutional rights, racial discrimination, ethnic intimidation, intentional infliction of emotional distress and assault and battery.
Jimmy Hoffmeyer, who is black and white, said that in March his daughter came home from Ganiard Elementary with much of the hair on one side of her head cut off.
Jurnee said a classmate used scissors to cut her hair on a school bus, Hoffmeyer told The Associated Press in April.
Two days after the bus incident, and after complaining to the principal and having Jurnee’s hair styled in a salon with an asymmetrical cut to make the different lengths less obvious, Jurnee came home with the hair on the other side cut off.
“I asked her what happened and said ‘I thought I told her that no child should get a haircut,'” Hoffmeyer said at the time. “She said ‘but dad, it was the teacher.’ The teacher cut her hair to match it.”
Jurnee’s mother is white. Hoffmeyer said the girl who cut Jurnee’s hair and the teacher who cut her hair are white.
The district “failed to adequately train, monitor, direct, discipline and supervise its employees, and knew or should have known that the employees would engage in the alleged behavior because of the inadequate training, customs, procedures and policies, and lack of discipline that existed for the employees,” according to the lawsuit.