Graduate Not Allowed To Walk Due To Hair Color

Posted at 6:08 PM, May 21, 2016

You don't have to be around Joslyn Barahona long to know teal is one of her favorite colors. As an aspiring marine biologist it's fitting for her, but teal is one of a few hair colors she's sported in the past.

"Changed it so many times. It's just, it's addicting," she laughed. 

Joslyn can smile about it now, but Friday was a much different story. It was graduation day at Gallatin High School. 

"I was looking forward to it because I wanted to walk with my class even though I finished in December," she said.

Joslyn has been preparing to transfer to a university and has been taking classes at Vol State since she graduated early.

"That's why I changed my hair funky because I finished high school," said Joslyn. 

It wasn't until the graduation rehearsal she learned her hair color was a problem.

"I looked at the seating chart, saw where I was supposed to sit, went to go sit down, and then one teacher came up to me while I was talking to my friends and said, 'You're going to have to change your hair between now and 7 o'clock,'" explained Joslyn. 

The Gallatin High School Student Handbook does say extreme hair color which "deviates from the norm is not permissible," a rule Joslyn knew about.  

"I did, but with me coming back for that one day, I didn't know it was going to be a big issue," she said. 

Joslyn also sported her teal locks at prom, it wasn't an issue then either. In the end she made the decision to keep her hair the way it was, and she was not allowed to walk across the stage.

"It would've been a really great feeling, makes me sad," she said. 

Looking back, she said she wouldn't change her mind.

"I don't think it was a mistake because I was standing up for myself and what I believe in. My hair, I didn't want to change it because I didn't want to change what I do and what I like. I just say stand up for yourself," Joslyn said.