8-year-old girl removed from Christian school for being too much like a boy

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TIMBERLAKE, Va. — She’s eight. She wears her hair short. She prefers pants over skirts and enjoys playing in the mud. Her name is Sunnie, and although her name may elicit images of sunshine, she is in the center of a storm.

Her grandparents removed from her from Timberlake Christian School after they received a letter telling them if Sunnie didn’t follow “biblical standards,” she would be refused enrollment next year. She attends public school now, although she would rather be back at Timberlake Christian.

“She cries every morning to get on the bus, she cries when she comes home because she wants to go back to Timberlake Christian with her friends,” said Doris Thompson, grandmother.

As for the letter, it’s tough for a child of eight to understand.

The letter reads in part, “”We believe that unless Sunnie as well as her family clearly understand that God has made her female and her dress and behavior need to follow suit with her God-ordained identity, that TCS is not the best place for her future education.”

Sunnie’s grandfather is frustrated.

“”How do you label a child, eight years old, or discriminate against an eight-year-old child?” Carroll Thompson asked.

The letter also states that administrators can refuse enrollment for “condoning sexual immorality, practicing a homosexual lifestyle or alternative gender identity,” according to ABC27. The school has not accused Sunnie of being anything, but said they simply want her grandparents to follow the guidelines set for all students.

Sunnie says she knows she’s a girl. She just likes to look and play like a boy. Her grandparents said they have no desire to re-enroll her at Timberlake Christian.

Read more about Sunnie here.



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    • Jackie

      How in the world do they have every right to remove her? She did nothing wrong. If given the choice growing up I wore jeans, I like having short hair because it’s easier to deal with and playing in the mud if fine for a child her age. She doesn’t know any better at that age anyway. They have no right to judge her or kick her out based on dress unless they actually have a dress code.

  • KC

    Why doesn’t the school just adopt a dress code? Slacks for boys and skirts or jumpers for girls? I have two daughters of the three that preferred jeans or pants and had short hair growing up…they are now VERY girly and love all things dressy & stylish. They have NO idea what this child will grow up to be. Very sad she misses her friends so much.

  • CT

    Send the school a picture of Jesus himself with his long locks of hair curling around his shoulders. They would refuse Jesus himself in their school based upon their rules. It definitely is not a Christian school.

  • Ej

    Most vocal Christians today wouldn’t know Jesus if he walked up and turned their other cheek for them. They are judgmental, intolerant, and selfish. They are the “goats” from Matthew 25:31-46.

  • kjg

    They do have a dress code–uniforms (I looked up their student handbook). And girls are allowed to wear pants. So I’m not quite sure what it is about this child and her appearance that is such a disruption at school. Unless we’re not getting the entire story, this is ridiculous.

  • chelsie

    This really bothers me . So sick of supposed “christian” facilities being run like this. Unfortunately, It says specifically in the handbook that they have sole discretion, to refuse admission or to discontinue enrollment and it has stipulations stating “included, but not limited to”. So pretty much this school could dismiss this child for no reason at all. Just because. But their “reasoning” within the letter sent home is absurd! She was allowed to wear pants per the dress code, its states no unnatural or extreme hair, which short hair on girls is neither of those, and no where does it say anything about getting dirty. There is obviously more to this story, if not, the administration of this school are a bunch of hypocritical bullies. Not going to win a lawsuit here, but I would say its for the best to get out of that school if that’s what they call acting “Christlike”.

    • cara

      I agree with you esther about God’s word. However in the new covenant with Jesus after his having died on the cross the laws of the women not being allowed to wear mens clothes is no longer a law we need to practice. I do not believe in the new testament it says a girl cannot have short hair or wear pants. I think that was very wrong judgement on the school’s part.