ACLU urges school districts to revise dress codes after ruling on Barbers Hill controversy

There has been an American Civil Liberties Union response on a news story that KSHN had covered, along with other media nationwide, during last school year in the Barbers Hill School District in Chambers County. The news story pertained to the Barbers Hill school districts student dress code.

The Texas division of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has sent a letter to nearly 500 Texas school districts asking them to revise their dress codes. The letter comes two weeks after a federal judge blocked the Barbers Hill Independent School District in Mont Belvieu from retaining a school dress code that is described, by some, as racist. The dispute stems from a ruling by the Barbers Hill ISD officials that two students, Kaden Bradford and De’Andre Arnold were told that unless they cut their hair, Arnold would not be allowed to walk across the stage at his last May graduation, and that Bradford, an underclassman, at Barbers Hill, would be placed on indefinite suspension. The cases became major national news stories during the last school year. In fact both Barbers Hill students transferred out of the district earlier this year, Based on the ACLU letter Kaden Bradford is told he can return to the school for his junior year at Barbers Hill without threat of suspension. The letter from the ACLU includes a copy of De’Andre Arnold’s court case and dress code guidance from the Texas Association of School Boards. If districts want to restrict hairstyles and hats, the association suggests they be mindful of how their rules- quote-   “may have a disparate impact on students of a particular race.”-end quote. We have no information on a response by the Barbers Hill ISD The Barbers Hill ISD Director of Communications, Jami Navarre was not in a position to comment on the ACLU letter, as the school district had not yet received it. 

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