Target: Becky Bowman, Principal, Timberlake Christian School
Goal: Condemn school’s unfairly critical letter to the grandparents of a young girl
A private Christian school has recently singled out a young girl for her “tomboy-like” clothing and haircut. The grandparents of eight-year-old Sunnie Kahle received a letter criticizing the girl’s sporty attire and short-cut hair, claiming that it is not in keeping with the typical gender expectations of a female student. The letter went on to say that the child was unwelcome in the school unless she would change her style of dress.
The letter cited several bible verses that the school interpreted as condemning toward homosexuality. It went on to say that Sunnie’s attire, haircut, and behavior confused the other children about her sexual identity, and implied that the child’s clothing choices were sexually immoral. As with many other children her age, Sunnie typically wears loose-fitting, sporty clothing, suitable for the many hours she spends playing outside. Her preference for close-cropped hair has caused most of the issue, with school officials claiming that it does “not fit with the child’s god-ordained sexuality.”
Since receiving the letter, Sunnie has transferred to a public school. According to her grandparents, she often cries before leaving to school because she misses her friends at Timberlake Christian. No child should feel ridiculed and left out at school, particularly by adults, nor should she be separated from her friends because of such a trivial matter. Your signature will condemn Timberlake Christian School’s actions, which have resulted in unfair exclusion of a young girl.
Dear Becky Bowman, Principal, Timberlake Christian School,
Sunnie Kahle, a former student of Timberlake Christian School, was recently forced to leave the school due to her “tomboy-like” appearance. Her grandparents received a letter criticizing the girl’s loose-fitting clothing and short cropped hair, claiming that it did not fit with the girl’s “god-ordained sexual identity.” The letter stated that if Sunnie did not change her appearance, the school may not be the best place to continue her education.
Sunnie pairs sporty clothing with a short-cropped haircut, attire not unusual for a young, active girl.
Sunnie has since left Timberlake Christian in favor of a public school. Her grandparents say that she often cries before leaving in the morning because she misses her friends at Timberlake School. This young girl has been unfairly excluded from a large part of her life because of something as trivial as her appearance. Above all, the Bible teaches love, acceptance, and kindness to all, qualities which Timberlake Christian has seemingly forgotten. I condemn the actions that led to Sunnie’s departure, resulting in unnecessary emotional pain for a young student.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Christoph Müller via Creative Commons