After a little girl was teased for her short hairstyle, her teacher got a haircut too

·3 min read
Shannon Grimm, a kindergarten teacher in Texas, cut off her hair in solidarity with a student who was teased for her short haircut. (Photo: Courtesy of Shannon Grimm)
Shannon Grimm, a kindergarten teacher in Texas, cut off her hair in solidarity with a student who was teased for her short haircut. (Photo: Courtesy of Shannon Grimm)

The teacher of a child who was teased for her short hair chopped off her hip-length locks to be “twins” with her student.

Five-year-old Prisilla Perez, a student at Meador Elementary School in Willis, Texas, was unhappy with her recent haircut, which was prompted by a severe case of lice, according to Houston television station KTRK. Her kindergarten teacher, Shannon Grimm, sympathized with her unhappiness.

“Prisilla started wearing a hat to school that covered her neck and ears, and she refused to take it off,” Grimm, 31, a mother of three, tells Yahoo Lifestyle. “I didn’t push the issue, but after a few weeks, she felt comfortable saying that she wanted her long hair back.”

When students started calling Prisilla a boy, she felt worse, often crying and losing focus in school. Grimm and Prisilla’s mom were concerned, but their ideas didn’t work. “We had classroom discussions about how girls have short hair and boys have long hair, and I showed them photos of movie stars with different looks,” Grimm tells Yahoo Lifestyle. “It wasn’t sinking in.”

Texas kindergarten teacher Shannon Grimm cut off her long hair to make a student with short hair feel pretty. (Photo: Willis ISD)
Texas kindergarten teacher Shannon Grimm cut off her long hair to make a student with short hair feel pretty. (Photo: Willis ISD)

Grimm thought about Prisilla throughout winter break, and one morning, she had an idea: Cut off her hair — a scary thought for Grimm, who wore her hair long and took pride in it. “I’ve never had short hair, and I stressed about it for two weeks before making a decision,” she tells Yahoo Lifestyle.

On Jan. 4, Grimm invited a hairstylist friend to her home. “I didn’t want to be surrounded by mirrors in a salon,” she says. “I told him to keep going, even if I cried.”

The kindergarten class loved their teacher’s new ‘do, especially Prisilla, who excitedly ran off the school bus that afternoon yelling, “Mom, Ms. Grimm cut her hair!” The teacher also bought matching bows for her and the girl — who call themselves “Tinkerbell” — so they could style their hair together.

Texas teacher Shannon Grimm is a beauty role model for her kindergarten student Prisilla Perez. (Photo: Willis ISD)
Texas teacher Shannon Grimm is a beauty role model for her kindergarten student Prisilla Perez. (Photo: Willis ISD)

“Prisilla is a different person now, and the kids love her hair, too,” Grimm tells Yahoo Lifestyle. She’s promised to keep her hair short this year, or at least until Prisilla’s grows out.

In February, the teacher nominated Prisilla for the school district’s Student of the Month award, but during the Monday ceremony, she received a surprise “hero medal” from the girl. “Now we have matching awards,” says Grimm.

Prisilla’s mother, Maria Vasquez, tells Yahoo Lifestyle that Grimm’s thoughtfulness brought her to tears. “I was shocked, I was crying, I couldn’t believe it — she did something I wouldn’t have the guts to do. I will never forget that.”

Read more from Yahoo Lifestyle:

Follow us on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter for nonstop inspiration delivered fresh to your feed, every day.