Students Unbraiding Teachers Hair Controversy depicting the viral video and reactions.

Students Unbraiding Teacher's Hair Controversy

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Updated May 13, 2024 at 02:37PM EDT by Zach.

Added May 13, 2024 at 05:14AM EDT by sakshi.

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Related Explainer: What's With The Video Of Students Unbraiding Their Teacher's Hair? Debates About @Thilluminatin1's Video Explained

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Overview

Students Unbraiding Teacher's Hair Controversy refers to discussions and jokes about a viral video showing TikToker and teacher @thilluminatin1 getting his hair unbraided by a group of female students in class as he works on his computer. The video was shared by the male teacher, eventually resulting in his firing. These events led to discussions on Black Twitter about whether the teacher's actions were appropriate or not, with some calling the unbraiding a way for him to bond with his students and others criticizing him for extracting unpaid labor from female students during school hours.

Background

On May 7th, 2024, TikToker[1] @thilluminatin1 posted a video showing him working on his laptop in the classroom as a group of female students unbraid and detangle his hair. The video was captioned, "Students don't care how much you know until they know how much you care. Teaching is a work of heart," and gathered over 6 million views and 770,000 likes in a week (seen below).

@thilluminatin1 Students don't care how much you know until they know how much you care. Teaching is a work of heart. Comment your thoughts #teacher #teachersoftiktok #teacherproblems #millenialsoftiktok #middleschool ♬ Chopin Nocturne No.2 Op.9-2(1391533) – 314P

Online Reactions

On May 8th, 2024, X[2] user @TanelleIrene reposted the video with the caption, "Black parents tap in! Would you be okay with your daughter unbraiding her teacher’s hair? Is this appropriate?" The post was quoted by various X users weighing in with their opinions on the issue.

On May 8th, X[3] user @xxdbreezyxx quoted the post writing, "I’m watching this and didn’t even realize that’s my little sister in the background. She said that he’s her favorite teacher but today they were all forced to write statements and he may get fired…" and gathering over 90,000 likes in five days (seen below, left).

On the same day, X[4] user @Jo2timess posted various videos of female teachers having their hair braided and dyed by their students, gathering over 20,000 likes in five days (seen below, right).


dee breezy @xxdbreezyxx I'm watching this and didn't even realize that's my little sister in the background. She said that he's her favorite teacher but today they were all forced to write statements and he may get fired... Black Twitter Sincerely Nelle @TanelleIrene • May 8 Black parents tap in! Would you be okay with your daughter unbraiding her teacher's hair? Is this appropriate? 2:08 8:58 PM May 8, 2024 5.9M Views Tik Tok @thilluminatin Fat Mama Jo@Jo2timess • May 8, 2024 So what's actually the problem? Because it's not that they're doing his hair and once y'all figure it out I want that to be the topic of discussion. II 0:00 TikTok @ms.zigrang よ Tik Tok 0:40 "Students that help you take down your hair va TikTak Jamb ▶0:58 0:44 Letting my student do my hair pt 3 Sincerely Nelle @TanelleIrene • May 8 館 Black parents tap in! Would you be okay with your daughter unbraiding her teacher's hair? Is this appropriate? 2:20

On May 9th, 2024, the video was discussed on the subreddit /r/blackladies[6] and the Instagram page @theshaderoom, the latter receiving replies from people claiming to be the parents of the girls in the video (seen below).[7]


lady_v9923 This is my daughter teacher. He is the most love teacher at this school. Don't over- sexualized or overthinking this video. He isn't anything wrong. I know for a fact is this was a female teacher nobody would be saying anything. He is a great teacher and actually love those students. He is a passionate teacher. 4d 55,509 likes Reply View replies (714) destinywhet Please! This is my daughter teacher! He is VERY PHENOMENAL !! A huge role model and leader to our school! The way yall over sexualize everything is VERY sickening!! Continue being who you are! 4d 23,311 likes Reply View replies (323)

On May 10th, 2024, the teacher posted a video to his TikTok,[5] saying that he was fired from his job. The video gathered over 1 million plays and 60,000 likes in two days (seen below).

@thilluminatin1 #teacher ♬ Sad and sad guitar(1102575) – syummacha

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External References

[1] TikTok – thilluminatin1

[2] X – TanelleIrene

[3] X – xxdbreezyxx

[4]  X – Jo2timess

[5] TikTok – thilluminatin1

[6] Reddit – /r/blackladies

[7] Instagram – theshaderoom

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