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Last year's dress code policy will be enforced

Published August 04. 2010 05:00PM

Students in the Palmerton Area School District are to adhere to last year's dress and groom policy until further notice.

School board President Barry Scherer announced during a committee workshop of the board on Tuesday that its ad-hock policy committee will meet at 7 p.m. Aug. 12.

Superintendent Carol Boyce said that meeting will be held "with the purpose of reporting out the draft, look for a consensus approval to take it out of the ad-hock committee, and send it onto the board's policy committee for review."

"After the board's subcommittee has looked at it, then it will go to first reading to the board," Boyce said. "At some point in that process, there will be the solicitor's thorough review for legalities."

Boyce said the policy is "being treated the same way as any other policy development would happen."

Once classes resume later this month, students are to comply with last year's dress and groom policy as per the old student handbook, Boyce said.

The announcement came one week after a meeting of the ad-hock policy committee was canceled. At that time, the committee was expected to look over a revised dress and groom policy sent to the school board solicitor for his review.

Last month, the committee made numerous revisions to the policy, which was then sent to board solicitor David Shulman. That action came after the group determined which of four policies created last month by four teams it favored.

However, the committee said at that time any revisions to the district's dress and groom policy likely wouldn't go into effect until January of 2011.

At a special meeting in June, the board agreed to form the committee that consists of district administrators, teachers and several parents from each of the five buildings in the district to review the district's dress and groom policy.

The dress and grooming policy was discussed at a board committee meeting in June, when it was decided that a special meeting was needed to revisit the matter.

Prior to that, the board in April held a special meeting in response to a request by junior high school Principal Thaddeus Kosciolek, who said he believed the matter needed to be revisited because instances where the dress code was violated continued to escalate.

Kosciolek also said at that time he hoped the district would consider the adoption of a dress code similar to one adopted by the Tamaqua Area School District. He said Panther Valley and Pleasant Valley school districts have also adopted new dress codes.

Larry Wittig, president of Tamaqua Area School Board, attended that special meeting to discuss the successful dress code that was implemented in the Tamaqua Area School District five years ago.

Jim Thorpe Area School District several months ago adopted a new dress code for its students that will go into effect at the start of this school year.

Kosciolek said that in instances where students are in violation of the dress code, parents are called and asked to bring in something else to wear. If not, the students are placed in in-school suspension, he said.

High school Principal Kathy Egan previously said the school has extra Palmerton Blue Bomber T-shirts, which students have the option to wear.

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