09/28/2012 11:33 am ET Updated Sep 29, 2012

Jessica Stirewalp, Millbridge Elementary Mother, Furious After Teacher Cuts Inches Off 7-Year-Old Girl's Hair

The mother of a 7-year-old girl with Down syndrome is fuming after she says her daughter’s teacher cut off several inches of her hair without parental consent, WSOC-TV reports.

“She doesn't even get in front of the mirror anymore,” grandmother Mary Poole said, referring to the incident last Friday at Millbridge Elementary School in Rowan County, North Carolina.

Stirewalp told WSOC-TV she received a phone call from Jesslyn’s assistant teacher, who told the mother that she had cut about four inches of the girl's hair "because she got food in it.”

“It was more [like] 8 inches. And when she walked in the house, you could tell that she thought she was in trouble,” Stirewalp said. “I mean, it hurts my feelings, and I know it hurts her feelings.”

The family acknowledged there are conflicting stories coming out of the school, as they also received a letter from the teacher stating that the teacher "trimmed it up" after Jesslyn “would not quit taking her hair down."

School district officials said they cannot comment on anything involving a particular child.

In May, the mother of a fourth grade student with autism at Woodrow Wilson Elementary School was outraged when her son's teacher's aide not only pulled out his tooth at school, but managed to pull out one that wasn't loose.

"He is fine," the teacher said in an email to the student's mother, Sabrina Grant. "You will be receiving his tooth this afternoon when he arrives home. If you are bothered by us pulling his tooth, please let me know. I apologize for this in advance.”

Last fall, Marshall Junior High student Sheldon Williams said administrators went too far when they used a permanent marker to fill in lines shaved into his hair. The Texas teen had two areas on his head where the shave is closer to his scalp, which school officials said was a violation of dress code prohibiting "designs shaved into hair."



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