Student Forced To Shave Head Because Principal Is Clueless About the Military

Student Forced To Shave Head Because Principal Is Clueless About the Military

The story is so simple, and yet the actions are baffling, idiotic, and infuriating.

Seven year old Adam Stinnett’s older stepbrother is in the Army, and has previously served in Afghanistan. Like many little brothers, Adam wanted to copy big brother, so he got a “high and tight” haircut.

Adam Stinnett's haircut
Adam Stinnett’s haircut
But apparently, Principal Monti Hillis is uneducated when it comes to military haircuts, and young Adam ended up in the principal’s office because either she or someone on the staff believed that it was a “mohawk.”

But the school called it a distraction and forced his mom to shave the child’s head after sending a note home with Adam.

Adam’s mother Amy says she told the school the haircut was not a mohawk, that it was a military haircut. “Well, we’re not a military school and that it has to be cut or he cannot return to school until it is,” was the response Amy says was given to her by the school. “It broke my heart. It pretty much crushed a seven-year-old’s dreams” Amy stated.

I love the line “we’re not a military school” as repeated by the mom. Because Adam Stinnett attends Bobby Ray Memorial Elementary School in McMinnville, Tennessee, which happens to be named after Medal of Honor recipient David Robert “Bobby” Ray, a Navy Corpsman who died in Vietnam. From the school’s own website:

Bobby Ray Memorial Elementary School is named as a tribute to all veterans. Our namesake, David Robert ‘Bobby’ Ray, attended our school when it was a high school. After graduation, he enrolled at the University of Tennessee Knoxville before joining the military. He was killed at Phu Loc, Quang Nam Province in Vietnam on March 12, 1969. Because of his heroic efforts to save the lives of his fallen comrades while under heavy fire, Ray was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor becoming the only Warren Countian ever to be so honored.

The school mascot is the “Stars” because the Medal of Honor is in the shape of a star. The school colors are navy and white for the United States Navy. Is anyone else ready to choke on all the irony here?

When asked for comment, the Director of Schools (this district’s version of superintendent) chickened out.

Schools Director Bobby Cox wouldn’t comment on this case but said the district doesn’t have a policy against military haircuts and it’s up to each school to determine if a haircut is distracting.

So in a school named after a Medal of Honor recipient, it’s “distracting” to have a military-style “high and tight” haircut.

Unless there is more to the story than this, I’m thinking that all the adults involved are ignorant of who they are attempting to honor at this school, and that they had better educate themselves on what a REAL “distraction” is. Because a real distraction is the hole they have just dug for themselves with their absolute stupidity – not one little boy’s haircut.

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  • Genie Smith says:

    Way to go, Deanna! šŸ™‚

  • OC says:

    It’s a good thing that I’m not a resident of Tennessee, especially that county because I’d likely get myself locked up after I “visited” the school.
    This makes my blood boil.
    I hope a whole bunch of vets get together down there and throw a “virtual” blanket party.


  • Jodi says:

    They owe this young man, at the very least, an apology. Just unbelievable.

  • Chris in N.Va. says:

    Seems the Director of Schools pulled his head out of his rectum long enough to see his shadow, cast by the light of truth and common sense.

    Nothing like sunshine as both a roach-chaser and disinfectant.

  • Merle says:

    It’s hard to believe this is “accidental”


    • Chris in N.Va. says:

      Parents having the moxie to stand up to these Junior Gestapo wannabes and the news getting out the general public was itself the key “accident” in the whole scenario.

  • Crystal says:

    First off the school is named after a veteran so tell me this Mrs.Hillis if that veteran walked into your school today would you frown upon him if he had the same hair cut? 2nd By cutting the hair off the rest of the way did you stop to think that this I will subject that child to getting picked on by his peers?

  • Mike W says:

    As if a 7-year old child being made to be bald isn’t a distraction of the school’s making. I don’t know of any 7-year olds or 7-year olds as a population who are predominantly – or even by exception – naturally bald. Idiots!

  • clay says:

    this pisses me off! this principle should be fired asap and thrown in the brig

  • al says:

    is principal against american values he’s teaching are kids?

  • RE Ramcharan says:

    Hey, Legislature! Let’s give these people more money!

  • old star says:

    The whole story isn’t being told. It was a mohawk and it was cut into a high and tight before the picture. This mom is trying to get her 15 min of fame. School officials can’t comment and tell the real story because of confidentiality. I know the principal personally and she is a big military supporter who is fair and is the victim of lies here.

    • Johnny says:

      If what you say is true, old star, perhaps I could offer a suggestion. If she truly has no objection to military-style cuts how about she arrange an “honor our military” day on which volunteer barbers come and give any student who wants one a free military cut. Better yet, she could get one herself.

      How about it, old star? Is Ms. Hillis willing to put her “mullet” where your mouth is?

      • Jodi says:

        I second. ^^^

      • Scare Bear says:

        I played at their Veteran’s Day program last year and let me say it was an amazing program. The principal had my respect. When this story came out I was baffled by this. Now my teacher friends are telling me there’s more to this than we know. So with my interaction with the school and the new info coming in, I’m willing to give the principal the benefit of the doubt.

    • Oscar Pearson says:


    • Joshua Minchew says:

      How can a Mohawk be turned into a high and tight ????????

    • Larry says:

      Not buying it! The principal obviously knew and objected to the military style haircut. In her own words “we are not a military school”.

    • renea says:

      Now the principal has idiots backing her up with lies. There is no way that was a mowhawk, its to wide. Go ahead think up another lie we’re waiting….

    • rwm52 says:

      Thank you, old star. People who know the principal are pushing back on the false narrative.

      Apparently, people haven’t seen modern day Mohawks which don’t always resemble those back in my day which were the narrow strip. There are a lot of variations these days.

  • Jack says:

    I’m sure the principal would like to hear from everyone directly.

  • Melissa Newkirks says:

    I call BS on “old star”‘s comment that it was a Mohawk first. It would be a more slender a shave than what I’m seeing. The span of the top of the head is NOT a Mohawk. Just saying.

  • Ken Nilsson ADC USN RET. says:

    Instead of telling a student he should be proud of his brother who is serving his country, the Principal chose to shame a seven-year-old boy who wanted to look like a soldier. This absolutely disgusts me.

    For 21 years I was proud to wear my hair “high and tight” including 3 combat tours in Viet Nam.

    I am outraged that the community of McMinnville would tolerate a Principal without any honor, especially when you take into account that Bobby Ray Memorial Elementary School is named after a serviceman awarded the Medal of Honor.

    A principal with this attitude who would bully a child for being patriotic needs to be dismissed.

    • Jodi says:

      Spot on!

    • rwm52 says:

      Thank you for your service. The principal has an uncle who is a Viet Nam veteran. Her father was a veteran, and many men in her family have served.

      The child was sent to the principal with a Mohawk which is against the school policy, not a “high and tight.”

      Here is a link to the Veterans Day program to honor their veterans which the principal emcee’s. Her behavior during the program speaks for itself, and her reputation is being tarnished without cause, not to mention the credible threats to her and her family. When did it become acceptable to threaten grandchildren? I urge you to read my other comments and consider there is another side to the story.

  • Dana says:

    Every last one of the boys at that school ought to get a high-and-tight cut, to demonstrate the idiocy of the administration.

    • Sgt A says:

      All local Vets should show up Monday morning with proper haircuts and not utter one word. Salute the Flag as it is being raised then leave quietly one by one. This would show respect and support for this cause.

      • Jodi says:

        Yes! ^^^

      • rwm52 says:

        There are local veterans who support the principal because they know her and they know she is a strong supporter of the military. The kid was sent to the office with a Mohawk, not a high and tight. What’s disrespectful is the mom crying victim to the local liberal paper and using the military as cover. That conservative media is perpetrating the false narrative is downright shameful.

    • Oscar Pearson says:

      Now that would be awesome. You have my support.

  • Oscar Pearson says:

    If I lived in TN I would be standing outside the school grounds til the day the principal is dumped.

  • Randy says:

    A real easy way to fix this.
    No one should buy a Nissan from the dealership where her husband works.

  • dottie says:

    As you said unless there is more to the story than this, that is so true. This story has two sides to it, and only one is represented. I have been appealed by the amount of people who have jumped on this band wagon when not knowing all the facts. It is also very disheartening that because of peoples gullibility that the safety of all the children who attend that school has been jeopardized.

  • MLMW says:

    I think it would be hilarious if all of the boys at that school got a military haircut. I know that won’t happen, but it would be awesome. This school principal is ignorant if he/she doesn’t know the difference between a mohawk and a military haircut. This person should receive “The Most Clueless Principal of the Year” award.

  • t. l. ohlde says:

    I wonder if this principal would make a little girl wear a hat to school if she shaved her head to honor her mother who has cancer? Just asking

  • rwm52 says:

    Unfortunately, there’s been very little fact-checking to this story. Even more shameful is that conservative media outlets are running it without doing that checking.

    The boy was sent to the principal’s office by other school personnel sporting a Mohawk haircut which is specifically prohibited by Rule 9 in the Bobby Ray Elementary handbook. When the mom went to the local press, which is often called the Southern Slander by local conservatives, his hair was different.

    The principal is a life-long conservative and strong supporter of the military but is bound along with all other school personnel by FERPA laws not to discuss the situation. Not even to defend herself or her staff. The mom is free to say anything she pleases and vilify the principal and the school.

    There have been 2 programs at the school this year honoring veterans. There’s a link to one below which the principal emcees, and who has a long line of veterans in her family. She is a life-long supporter, who routinely buys meals for soldiers when she sees them dining out.

    The local community, especially those who know the principal, has started pushing back against this narrative, including some local veterans. She works closely with the Detachment unit at the school which includes a couple of retired Marines.

    Apparently, it’s too much trouble to take just a moment to consider there might be another side. And here I thought we were supposed to be better than the leftists. A mother doesn’t like the rule, cries victim, conservative media outlets perpetrated an unsubstantiated story started by a liberal local newspaper, and the principal and her family get death threats. When did it become okay to target grandchildren? Is there no common decency left?

    No doubt somebody on here will jump in and disagree, but if there is any decency left, what if you’re wrong? What if a decent, hard-working conservative woman’s reputation is being wrongfully and shamefully destroyed because she and the school are bound by federal law not to discuss the situation. Law that is in place to protect parents who can say whatever they please. Ironic, isn’t it?

  • sam says:

    Per one of the mom’s Facebook pages, she appeared on the Jerry Springer show back in 2012. Tells me all I need to know about it. She is just using her son and you veterans to get some attention. Any man on this site suggesting that the principal be physically punished should be ashamed. Ask local vets in the McMinnville area about the principal. She is a huge supporter of the military and veterans. Shame on all of you.

  • Sam says:

    The principal is one of the finest, classiest ladies I’ve ever known, from one of the finest families I’ve ever known. Joe, Randy and all you other big tough men need to stand down.

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