Girl suspended for bright pink hair

The Associated Press

NEW MILFORD, Conn. A new school year, a new hair color, a possible lawsuit.

Danielle Kriegsman, 13, was suspended from eighth grade at Schaghticoke Middle School because she showed up for the first day of school Wednesday with bright pink hair.

The girl's mother, Gina Satmary, said her daughter will be allowed to return but only to a special class for troubled students.

"That class is for kids who bring guns to school. I'm upset because they're making her a part of this crowd," Satmary said Friday. "She's just an average kid who experimented with her hair."

Satmary met Friday with Superintendent Mark Franceschini and Principal Donald Fiftal. She says they are interfering with her daughter's constitutional right to free speech and she will work with an attorney to get Danielle back into regular classes.

The Connecticut Civil Liberties Union, meanwhile, has sent a certified letter to school officials warning them of legal consequences.

Neither Franceschini nor Fiftal returned telephone messages left at their offices by The Associated Press.

In suspending Danielle, school officials had described her hairdo and the neon purple shade chosen by fellow student Jenn Samias as a distraction. They were ordered home and told to wear wigs or return their hair to its natural color.

Jenn relented and dyed hers back, but Danielle vowed to keep her pink locks.

"I didn't hurt anyone. I like my hair this way," Danielle said. "I went to a concert a few weeks ago, and a lot of kids had it."

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