A father has taken legal action against a Michigan school after a teacher cut his biracial daughter’s hair without his consent. As NBC News reported, Jimmy Hoffmeyer filed a $1 million lawsuit on Tuesday (Sept. 14) against Mount Pleasant Public Schools, who he claims violated his daughter’s constitutional rights with an act of racial discrimination.
According to Hoffmeyer, his seven-year-old daughter, Jurnee Hoffmeyer, came home from school one day in March with the side of her head cut. When explaining her new hairstyle to her parents, she said that a classmate on her school bus was responsible for the cut. In hopes to prevent the same occurrence, Hoffmeyer complained to the principal.
He then took his daughter to a stylist who evened out the various lengths. Two days later, his daughter returned home with the other side of her hair really low. After confronting Jurnee, Mr. Hoffmeyer reportedly learned that a teacher intentionally cut the hair to make both sides equal.
“I asked what happened and said, ‘I thought I told you no child should ever cut your hair,’” Hoffmeyer told NBC News. “She said, ‘But dad, it was the teacher.’ The teacher cut her hair to even it out.”
In the suit, the seven-year-old’s father alleges that the school district “failed to properly train, monitor, direct, discipline and supervise their employees.” He claims that they also “knew or should have known that the employees would engage in the complained-of behavior given the improper training, customs, procedures, and policies and the lack of discipline that existed for employees.”
Hoffmeyer is also accusing the school, the district and the teacher of ethnic intimidation, intentional infliction of emotional distress, and assault and battery.
Per reports, the employee who cut Jurnee’s hair was reprimanded in July. Though no racial bias was determined amid the independent investigation, the worker, who reportedly had “good intentions,” violated school policy when she proceeded to cut the seven-year-old’s hair without seeking consent from her parents or the district’s administrators.