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Colorado girl shaves head for cancer-stricken friend; school objects

A Colorado third-grader who shaved her head to express solidarity with a cancer-stricken friend may be exempted from a charter school's dress code that bans shaved heads.

Jamie Renfro said Sunday that Caprock Academy in Grand Junction had asked her daughter, Kamryn, to stay away from campus until her hair grew back because she had violated its dress code.

“We do sign that we understand and agree to the rules every year...but honestly, I never thought my 9-year-old daughter would do something so courageous, brave and selfless,” Renfro said in a public post on Facebook.

She kept Kamryn at home on Monday and took her out with Delaney Clements, the 11-year-old friend who started chemotherapy last month, for the third time. She’s fighting a fourth relapse of the childhood cancer known as neuroblastoma.

The school temporarily welcomed Kamryn back on Tuesday and said it would discuss whether to grant her a permanent exemption from the policy.

“She got up, got ready, and held her head high as she walked into her classroom this morning,” Renfro said Tuesday morning on Facebook.

Caprock Headmaster Kristin Trezise told the Los Angeles Times that school officials “fully support” Kamryn, but the school will not discuss the case in detail because of education confidentiality laws.

In her social media postings, Renfro has emphasized that school officials have been respectful and compassionate.

“They just made a decision to enforce their dress code, which we were asking to be changed,” Renfro wrote. “That goal is on its way to being reached...”

The district’s board of directors is expected to meet behind closed doors Tuesday night to discuss Kamryn’s situation, according to an email the district sent to parents. The board could then vote publicly on issuing a waiver to Kamryn.  

The school has said that dress code rules are intended “to promote safety, uniformity and a non-distracting environment” and that exceptions are made in "exigent and extraordinary circumstances."

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