Aug 10

“Attention! This is the Hair Police! Come out with your sideburns trimmed!”

Jon Dallons in long hair battle with the Paso Robles High School administration. Son of Paso school board candidate. © 2010 The Tribune/Michael Raphael 3/11/1969

High school administrators dream of the days when the biggest controversy on campus was hair length.
Today they juggle funding issues, test scores, curriculum as well as drugs, campus violence, gangs, teen pregnancy…hey I don’t see haircuts anywhere on this list.
This story ripped from the headlines show Jon Dallons, 15, with a Beatle style haircut, (modified to show his ears), black turtleneck, chain with medallion and looking like someone the principal needs to talk to.

Published in the then Telegram-Tribune March 12, 1969:

School board issue?
Long hair beef at Paso Robles

By Michael Raphael
Staff Writer

The flap over the hair length of the son of a Paso Robles school board candidate is temporarily settled.
Jon Dallons, a 15-year-old sophomore, agreed to the suggestion by Dr. Charles James, district superintendent, to get a haircut.
Dallons, son of John Dalons, 42, who is running for the joint elementary and high school boards, was suspended for 10 school days on Feb. 17 because his hair exceeded student council standards.
“Dr. James would never make it as a student because his hair is longer than mine,” the young Dallons said.
Another ruckus started last Wednesday, over the wearing of medallions, the boy said, when boys and girls were told to take off medallions and necklaces.
Jon was told to get a haircut on Jan.14, and that’s when “the trouble started,” his father said. High school principal Steve Zorich told them he would not allow his son to circulate a petition calling for a rules change to allow longer “current trend” hair, Dallons said.
“We don’t want any trouble on campus,” Dallons quoted Zorich as saying. Then Dallons decided he didn’t want to get his hair cut, but was allowed to stay in school anyway, until his mid-February suspension.
After getting the haircut, Jon was again stopped when he showed up wearing a medallion. He was told to take it off.
The elder Dallons, is owner-operator of Western Quartz Products at 2432 Spring St., directly across from the high school.
He said he is not running for the school board because of the hair issue, but had been intending to run long before it came up because he wants “to see where the money is going.”
Dallons has been in business for himself for 15 years, and brought his business to Paso Robles four years ago. He has attended Bakersfield and Los Angeles City Colleges and spent one year at USC.
He said that communications with school officials has been “pretty good,” but that he backs his son up “all the way.” He said he and his son do not expect a rules change even though Jon thinks “80 percent if the kids will sign his petition.
James said a “school reflects the thoughts of the community,” and both Dallons and James said it is a “conservative community.”
Younger Dallons said he was warned at the last encounter that he had 10 days to get his “marginal” hair trimmed again, and that after that he would be “reminded” to get another cut.
Jon said 10 of the school’s 35 teachers are “coaches of one sort or another,” and are “short hair conscious,” more interested in athletics than teaching.
In Dallons’ letter, he said “the law guarantees and requires me to have an education until 16 without any mention of length of hair.”
That seems to size up the Dallons’ side of the issue. But, as he talks, hair grows and young Jon is again nearing the danger point.

Telegram-Tribune page published Dec. 10 1968 documenting protests.

Conveniently reporter/photographer/friend of Photos from the vault/ Michael Raphael also photographed the relevant punctuation challenged section of the student’s Bill of Laws reprinted here:

Section 3 – Violations
1. Boys
a. Dyed or bleached hair will not be accepted
b. Good judgment and discretion shall always prevail in student apparel and hair styles.
2. Girls
a. Any type of sweat shirt, shorts. capris. pedal pushers and other such apparel will not be accepted except on special occasions designated by the administration.
b. Good judgment and discretion shall always prevail in student apparel and hair styles.

Under these rules apparently the Beach Boys as well as the Beatles are seen as pernicious influences on they youth of our nation. Administrators were having nightmares featuring hordes of fashion deprived young women storming the campus shouting “Viva los pedal pushers, viva los Capris!”

In fairness administrators were freaking out at this time as violent protests were breaking out on college campuses. Disruptive protests at Berkley and San Francisco were fresh in many minds. What short sighted administrators were failing to note was the protests were not caused by hair length.

Uh, this just in, hair length did not create the issues surrounding civil rights, free speech and the Vietnam War.

Jon Dallons’ medallion reads “Verseav 21 Janu. 19 Fev.” Post a comment if you know what the significance is.

Related posts:

  1. Crazy Dress Up Day
  2. 1969 Back to School / Senator Everett Dirksen
  3. Midnight police patrol
  4. Cuesta amphitheater floral fashion show
  5. Turn of the Century advertising