The mother of a 7-year-old girl in Seabrook, Texas, is outraged that her daughter came home from school with henna tattoos painted on her hands (video below).
"I saw her hands were decorated and asked her what is this and she said, 'It's henna,'" Tammy Samour told KHOU. "And I didn't know what that was."
The painted-on dye tattoos were part of a Multicultural Day activity at Ed White Elementary School. The tattoos will eventually wear off, but Samour asserted they are connected to Hindu and Muslim faiths.
"It's upsetting to go through Christmas with another religion's celebratory symbolism all over my daughter's hands," Samour said.
The Clear Creek Independent School Distric has apologized, and ISD spokesperson Elaina Polsen said, "This is intended to celebrate diversity and not to be divisive."
"We certainly regret that we could have and we should have provided additional information as far as henna artwork," Polsen added.
"Exploring other cultures is a wonderful thing," Samour stated. "But tattooing another culture's expressions on my daughter is not acceptable."
The school did send out an email to tell parents that the children would be learning about cultures from different countries, and added that it "will be doing henna."
"I didn't see the email, my husband did, but we had no idea what henna was," Samour told KPRC.
Samour and the school teacher have tried to clean the little girl's hands with numerous products, but to no avail. Henna dye is approved for hair use in the U.S., not skin.
"Especially that Christmas is next week," Samour added. "And we've got family Christmas photos, opening presents, church and she is going to be wearing that on her hands throughout the holiday."