Catholic School Sued In Federal Court Over Hair Extensions

Joshua Gill | Religion Reporter

The Archdiocese of New Orleans moved a lawsuit over a Catholic school’s removal of two students regarding a ban on hair extensions to federal court.

The mothers of two sixth-grade girls filed a lawsuit against Christ the King Parish School and the archdiocese Aug. 22, claiming that the school’s policy on hair extensions was discriminatory and unconstitutional because it blocked two black girls, Faith Fennidy and Tyrielle Davis, from the classroom, according to The Associated Press on Thursday. The girls said they were forced to leave class because of their hair extensions. (RELATED: Catholic High School Backtracks Covering Girls With ‘Modesty Ponchos’ After People Freak Out)

The brother of Fennidy shared a video of the incident on Facebook.


The video subsequently went viral, sparking a slew of criticism from commentators on social media venues who claimed the school’s policy affected black girls more than any other student demographic.

Attorneys for the archdiocese and the school argued for the move to federal court on the grounds that federal court, not state court, is the appropriate venue for litigating a case concerning an alleged violation of the U.S. Constitution. The removal of the case to federal court is common legal maneuver, but the plaintiffs may request that the case be moved back to state court, according to The New Orleans Advocate.

The school rescinded its ban on hair extensions. The attorney representing the families met with archdiocesan officials Aug. 29, although the dispute between the school and the families is ongoing. It has not been confirmed whether the girls have returned to the school.

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