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Sisters given multiple detentions and prom ban over hair extensions

Posted at 6:09 PM, May 13, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-13 18:19:09-04

MALDEN, Mass. -- Twin sisters Deanna and Mya Cook are on the verge of being suspended from school because of their hair, WCVB reported.

The handbook for the Mystic Valley Charter School, in Massachusetts, clearly states hair extensions are not allowed.

The siblings wear hair extensions, professionally woven into their own braids.

Their family argues that the school's hair extension clause is discriminatory because it mainly impacts young women of color.

"I don't know why they are making us suffer so much for something that we're supposed to do for our hair," the sisters asked. "For something that's our culture."

The twins have decided to stand their ground.

As a result they've served six detentions and recently got another letter in the mail issuing six more detentions.

The punishments do not end there.

The sisters have been kicked off the track team, banned from prom, and other after-school activities.

"If you don't agree with the policy, what do you do? You have to stand up for it. You have to have a conversation, you have to come to a compromise. That's what adults typically do," their dad Aaron Cook said.

Their mother pointed to the lack of black representation among school leaders.

"They don't understand the black culture, the black hair," she said. "We wanted to bring them a little information about that and they just shut us down."

School officials would not comment for the story, but the Massachusetts Charter Public School Association criticized the school calling it a "discriminatory policy."

In a letter sent home to parents, school leaders said hair extensions were banned from the school because they are "expensive and could serve as a differentiator between students of different socioeconomic backgrounds."