A Childhood Cancer Survivor Blogging about the World of Childhood Cancer

Kamryn Renfro has taught our entire nation a lesson in friendship. Just 9 years-old, she shaved her head in solidarity for her friend, Delaney Clements, who is battling cancer. Like I wrote yesterday, kids teach us. I imagine what a great friend Delaney must be to Kamryn for her friend to want to do this for her, and I applaud the compassionate selflessness Kamryn showed with her beautiful act of love for her friend. However, Caprock Academy, the school Kamryn attends in Grand Junction, CO, sent her home on Monday, stating she was violating their dress code. She could come back if she wore a wig.

The dress code “was created to promote safety, uniformity, and a non-distracting environment for the school’s students,” Catherine Norton Breman, president and chair of the academy’s board of directors, said in a statement.“

There is so much wrong with this, I do not even know where to begin!

Number 1:

I do not understand a school “dress code” that does not allow “bald heads.” There are people who cannot help being bald—including kids with cancer. Are we actually this unaware that kids get cancer? Is it not enough that children stricken with cancer have to lose their hair? This “policy” is antiquated. Will Caprock Academy send a child who is fighting cancer home until they come back with a wig? Ugggggggh! Please, Caprock Academy, strike that policy down now!

Number 2:

Hello, compassion? This is a crystal-clear example of selflessness. This is a brilliant example of friendship at its best. I would love to see Kamryn honored rather than reprimanded. I would love to see Delaney honored for the beautiful person she must be to have a friend who loves her so. These are the exact values we need to be teaching our youth. Let’s make an example of them, and honor them.

Number 3:

On Tuesday, the school’s board of directors took a vote that allowed Kamryn—with a special “waiver”– to come back to school. The vote was 3-1 in her favor. 3 to 1? Who is the “1,” and what objection could they possibly have? Gosh, if I could speak with that person… if I could open up that brain… or maybe that isn’t the problem area. It very well could be the heart.

Number 4

May this media storm bring lots and lots of attention to St. Baldrick’s Foundation—and not just attention, but throngs of people willing to shave their heads to help raise money for pediatric cancer research. Wouldn’t it be FANTASTIC if the Caprock Academy administrators atoned for their error by shaving their heads for St. Baldrick’s? We all make mistakes. We are all on a path of learning to become better people. There is nothing like turning mistakes into victories. I say, “Shave!”

“The whole reason we chose head shaving was to be in solidarity with kids who are going through treatment. I can’t believe people could miss the point like this.”

– Tim Kenny, co-founder, St. Baldrick’s Foundation

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Comments on: "Delaney Clements, Kamryn Renfro, and a St. Baldrick’s Shave Challenge for Caprock Academy" (5)

  1. The person who voted no is Bill Newcomer, a Sr. Program Manager with Honeywell

  2. D… thank you for letting me know. No doubt he is being sought out by a plethora of media sources. My first question– Is he bald? My second question– If he is not already bald, then when will he be shaving his head for St. Baldrick’s? I see a windfall of donations for pediatric cancer research if he is willing. This is the real question– is he willing? Come on Bill!!!

  3. Anonymous said:

    Bill Newcomer – Sr. Program Manager with Honeywell and teaches Project Management for the Educational Services Institute. He is married with four children and four grandchildren. He is interested in history and teaching curriculum.

    This guy has 4 kids and 4 grandkids and he voted no for that wonderful and brave girl who shaved her head bc her friend loos hair due to cancer. Really ??? What kind of father and grandfather he is?

    • I truly appreciate your information, Anonymous. Gosh! I don’t get it! I used to want to know why, but now it does not matter why. What matters is enlightenment. Childhood cancer strikes randomly. Current treatments for childhood cancer are toxic and tortuous. These children need every speck of our support and our compassion. Funding for research is pitifully low. St. Baldrick’s is the top private fundraiser for pediatric cancer research. I propose Mr. Newcomer and his fellow employees at Honeywell form a St. Baldrick’s team to honor Delaney Clements. I look forward to seeing them join Kamryn Renfro in her spectacular effort to support her friend fighting cancer.

  4. Kris Kris said:

    My girlfriend has the same problem at the school she works, she wants to shave for charity but the school says no? Might scare the kids? No, they will want to touch it, ask questions and learn. Ignorance is so last Century if we are evolving forward.

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