A compassionate kindergarten teacher has gone above and beyond to support one of her students — by cutting off her hair. Teacher Shannon Grimm was horrified when she discovered that a member of her class, 5-year-old Prisilla Perez, was being bullied because of her short hairstyle. So, she decided to do something radical to demonstrate her support for Perez.
“I would cry because I would think school was not fun,” Prisilla told local news outlet KTRK-TV of the relentless teasing.
Grimm knew something was up when the youngster became increasingly withdrawn, and even chose to sport a hat to school.
“[Her] friends started to call her a boy, and those words cut deep,” the teacher explained. “Anytime I would put my arm around to help her with her work she would get stiff and nervous.”
Obviously, the straight-forward answer would be to reprimand the school bullies, but Grimm new that this wasn’t going to be quite enough. So, she took drastic action, getting a radically different haircut that matched that of her young student. It was a wonderfully thoughtful decision, which she expanded on in a recent Facebook live:
Posted by Shannon Grimm on Thursday, January 3, 2019
“I did something today. I cut my hair today, I cut it all off,” she explained in the video. “I have one of my friends in my classroom that has really short hair and it’s not her fault — she wanted long hair, she wants long hair, but there were some reasons why she had to get her hair cut.”
“She’s been really sad and depressed at school because friends think that she looks like a boy,” Grimm continued. “That is exactly why I cut my hair. My students in my classroom are like my children, I love them so much, and when they come to school upset and sad because of the way they look, that destroys me.”
Kindergarten student Prisilla Perez was a happy little girl when the school year began. However, after getting her hair…
Prisilla was delighted with her teacher’s show of solidarity, noting that the gesture instilled in her a new sense of confidence in the classroom. The brave young girl was subsequently awarded the “Student of the Month” award for her courage. But that wasn’t all, “in a surprise twist,” the school wrote on its Facebook page, “Prisilla presented her teacher with a medal for being her hero.”
When asked what advice she would give young children who are insecure about their appearance, Grimm told WREG-TV that “it doesn’t matter what haircut you have.”
“You’re beautiful no matter what,” she said.
Many people reacted to the story, which was widely shared on social media.
“It takes one teacher to change a child’s life,” one Facebook user responded. “I had an elementary school teacher help me through tough times and I am almost 30 and still speak to her to this day! I think BOTH of their haircuts look adorable!! What a hero!”