Girl kicked out of class for nose ring

by | Oct. 28, 2009

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Twelve-year-old Suzannah Pabla didn't pierce her nose to be stylish, cool or deviant.

"I just wanted to be like my grandma in India," said the seventh-grader, who was born to an American mother and an Indian Sikh father.

But Bountiful Junior High School doesn't care. Suzannah was kicked out of class last week for wearing the nose ring, which her parents call "a symbol of her cultural and religious identity."

She wasn't allowed to return until she replaced the ring Tuesday with a transparent stud.

Davis School District officials say the school, which only allows students to pierce their ears, is just applying policy. The Indo-American Leadership Confederation calls the incident discrimination.

The seventh-grader was reading when her teacher took her aside Oct. 20 and told her the nose ring was a violation of the school's dress code. She was escorted to the principal's office, where she spent the next five hours.

"They told me I couldn't be in class with the ring in," Suzannah said. "I tried to take it out, but it was stuck."

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