On September 1st, a fifth grade Cheyenne and Arapaho boy was attacked by students who pinned him down and cut his hair during the school day at Washington Elementary School, according to news reports. The boy’s Grandmother told reporters the boy didn’t feel safe reporting the incident to teachers or school administrators.
Below is a statement from IllumiNative:
“We are concerned and outraged over the news that a young Cheyenne and Arapaho student was attacked and had his long hair cut off by other students while at school. We stand in solidarity with the Cheyenne Arapaho Tribe, the Native community in Oklahoma, and the Oklahoma Council on Indian Education and echo their calls for action and accountability.”
We are calling on Clinton Public School leaders to take this hateful act seriously. All children should be respected and cherished and schools must create school environments that are free from hate and discrimination.”
“In our communities, hair is sacred. It is one way to express pride and connection to culture and heritage.”
“We encourage school district leaders to listen to the Native community and take meaningful action to ensure students feel safe and respected at school.”