*:Not([hidden]): not (style) ~ *: not ([hidden]): not (style) {margin-top: 1rem;}]]>Image rightsReutersImage descriptionSylvain Helaine says that students he teaches learn to accept people who are different *: not ([hidden]): not (style) ~ *: not ([hidden]): not (style) {margin-top: 1rem;}]]>

France’s most tattooed man has said not to teach kindergarten children after a parent complained about his appearance.

Sylvain Helaine has tattoos on his body, face and tongue and his eyeballs have been surgically dyed black.

Mr Helaine, 35, still teaches elementary school children from the age of six.

He said he did not teach the child whose parents complained and that his own students were “cool” with his appearance because they knew him.

“Only when people can see me from a distance can they assume the worst,” he told Reuters.

Image rightsReutersImage descriptionThe child complained that seeing Mr. Helaine caused nightmares

Mr Helaine, also known as the “Freaky Hoody”, said he was teaching at a school in Palaiseau, near Paris, last year when a three-year-old told his parents that they had nightmares after seeing him.

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The child’s parents then complained to the education authorities.

Almost two months later, officials told him that he could no longer teach this age group – a decision Mr Helaine described as “quite sad”.

Image rightsReutersImage descriptionMr. Helaine is also known as the “Freaky Hoody”

His tattoos, said Mr Helaine, could help teach students to accept people who didn’t look like them.

He told BFM TV: “Children who watch me learn tolerance of others. When they are adults, they may be less racist or homophobic and not see disabled people as if they were something out of a circus.”

Mr. Helaine estimates that he spent approximately 460 hours under the tattoo artist’s needle.

This includes the procedure, in his eyes, for which he had to travel to Switzerland because it is illegal to have it done in France.

Related topics

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  • France
  • Paris
  • Tattoos

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