Xiamen School Gets In Students’ Hair, Bans Long Hair and Fringes

At one Xiamen school, boys cannot have hair longer than 6 mm, and girls cannot wear bangs. If students have naturally curly or light hair, they need medical documents to prove it.

The school rules of one school in the Chinese city of Xiamen have become a trending topic on Weibo. According to the rules of the Xiamen Commerce and Tourism School (厦门工商旅游学校), male students are not allowed to have hair longer than 6 mm, while girls cannot wear bangs.

Students are also not allowed to curl or dye their hair. The rules are so strict, that those with naturally curly or light hair need a document from the local hospital that proves it is natural.

The school rules, reported by The Paper on August 31, became a much-talked about topic on Sina Weibo when one student netizen recently complained about them, saying that new students would not get registered unless they cut their hair: “I feel this is an infringement of my personal rights.”

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New students who came to the school to register were shocked to discover they would not be able to enroll unless they immediately got a haircut.

According to a school employees who spoke to The Paper, the vocational school maintains these strict hairstyle rules with the future of the students in mind, not just because standardized haircuts are more welcomed by companies, but also because the school needs to guide students who “lack proper aesthetic values”.

On Weibo, the strict rules have triggered thousands of comments. The majority of netizens think the rules are ridiculous.

“6 mm hair is what you’d expect in prisons and in the army,” netizens say. “I bet it’s because the school director is bald,” one netizen responds.

“These school rules reflect the lack of individuality in Chinese schools,” one commenter writes.

“I just want to know – how is the hospital going to prove that your hair is naturally curly?”, another Weibo user comments.

Many people especially do not understand what is wrong with bangs: “What’s a schoolgirl without her fringe?!”

On the school’s official website, the Weibo hairstyle controversy has not been addressed. But one picture of the school’s sport’s team shows that for students who are already enrolled, the hairstyle rules are apparently less strict. Can you spot the fringe?

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– By Manya Koetse

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Author

About the author: Manya Koetse is the editor-in-chief of www.whatsonweibo.com. She is a writer and consultant (Sinologist, MPhil) on social trends in China, with a focus on social media and digital developments, Sino-Japanese relations and gender issues. Contact at manya@whatsonweibo.com, or follow on Twitter.

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