Talk about a hairy situation.
A 4-year-old boy's mission to grow his hair long enough to make a wig for cancer patients has resulted in him being expelled from school on the grounds that his locks violate the dress code, the Courier-Post reports.
Not surprisingly, the parents of blond-tressed toddler Jack Anthony Szablewski are upset at the decision made by the St. Dominic School in Brick, NJ.
They tell the paper that Jack's long locks are meant to be donated to the National Children's Leukemia Foundation, in honor of his grandfather and a young family friend who died of leukemia.
His private Catholic school, however, reportedly has a dress code stipulating that "boys' hair should be short and well groomed. Hair length may not exceed the back of the shirt collar and should be above the eyes."
Though Rayanne Bennett, spokeswoman for the Diocese of Trenton, told the Courier-Post that the prekindergarten student had been previously excused from the dress code during his first year at the school "out of respect for his hair donation efforts," problems arose when he still hadn't had a hair cut following a 13-month grace period.
The school also reportedly denies Jack's mother Renee's claims that her son was expelled and maintains that Mrs. Szablewski refused to discuss the issue with the school.
"The relationship with the family has been terminated on the basis of a required partnership between the school and the parents, which school administrators have deemed to be compromised," Bennett told the paper.
"The student will not be returning to St. Dominic."
The Szablewskis -- who say the dress code was added to the school handbook after they had paid tuition, which the school denies -- also claim that Jack was not allowed on school property the day after Mrs. Szablewski had to postpone a hair appointment for Jack due to bad weather, the paper reports.
Mrs. Szablewski also reportedly argues that school officials refused to meet with her and is fighting to get a full refund on any tuition and donations she has paid St. Dominic. The school has issued a $1,000 reimbursement but says registration fees and donations are nonrefundable.
"I'm not at war with my church nor with my faith," Mrs. Szablewski tells the Courier-Post. "I'm at war with people that are on these power trips. A 4-year-old boy is the victim. We still haven't cut his hair; our spirit was so broken.
"But we're ready to move forward at this point."
Do you think that the school's decision is in bad taste, or should the school be free to enforce its dress code? Leave a comment!