An appeals court in Indiana ruled yesterday that a school district could not mandate that male team members keep their hair short, Reuters reports. After Patrick and Melissa Hayden's son was kicked off his junior-high basketball team in 2010 for not cutting his hair above his "ears, collar, and eyebrows," the family filed suit against the school for discrimination, on the grounds that girls weren't subject to the same hair-length rules. The policy had been implemented by the school's boys varsity basketball coach, Stacy Meyer, to promote "team unity and a clean cut image." (A court had previously ruled in the school's favor.)
"Coach Meyer's policy prohibits far more than an Age-of-Aquarius, Tiny-Tim, hair-crawling-past-the-shoulders sort of hair style — it compels all male basketball players to wear genuinely short hair," Circuit Judge Ilana Rovner wrote. "In 2014, it is not obvious that any and all hair worn over the ears, collar, or eyebrows would be out of the mainstream among males in the Greensburg community at large, among the student body, or among school athletes. (Even one or two men on this court might find themselves in trouble with Coach Meyer for hair over the ears.)"
Though Daniel Radcliffe will tell you it's a nightmare, when it comes to long hair, boys in Indiana will now get to decide for themselves.
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