We recently reported about a new ad campaign and emoji created to normalize curly hair and make women realize that natural curls are beautiful. Well, it seems that a cheer squad in Texas has not yet received the memo. Makayla Fallaw, 11, was recently told by her squad that in order to take part in competitions she must straighten her curls and put her hair up in a high ponytail.
Makayla and her mother Jenny were not happy with the team’s straight hair rules, but attempted to comply anyway. Makayla explains in a report from her local ABC News affiliate how attempts at straightening her hair were not working. She says, “It was bad because half of it was curly, half of it was wavy and the other half was like, straight-ish.”
Jenny believed the straightening would only do damage to her hair and was sending the wrong message. Jenny explains, “I felt like I might make my daughter feel like her hair's not good enough because she's not like the other girls.” She adds, “It would destroy her hair, so I wanted to explain to them my reasoning.” She then took her issue up with the team’s director, Kevin Tonner, who was ultimately unwilling to budge on the hairstyle rules.
Tonner explains that Fallaw was well aware of the mandatory makeup and hairstyle requirements before she signed up to be a part of the squad. He says, “When you come into the sport, you understand there is make up to it. There's hair to it. We were trying to make the exception. We were trying to find a compromise and a happy medium. And she wasn't willing to have a compromise. She was very defensive.”
Tonner also points out that the team voted and agreed on the current straight hairstyle. As of now, Makayla has quit the team and is looking for a new cheer squad that will embrace her curls.
What do you think of this cheer squad’s requirement that all members have their hair straightened before a competition?
Do you think they should have bent the rules to allow for curls?