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Parents protest dress code school board meeting, Superintendent stands firm

Updated: Wednesday, September 25 2013, 10:52 PM CDT
Reported by: Ewa Roman 

CHAMBERSBURG -- Parents want to see the dress code rules loosened up at the Chambersburg Area School District.

However, despite hundreds of angry parents showing up to a school board meeting, the superintendent isn't budging on bending the rules, at least not this year.

Parents say the dress code goes too far. For example, kids can't wear hoodies or shirts that show collar bones.

At the school board meeting in Chambersburg Wednesday night, the board threatened to throw one woman out because it wasn't her time to speak. But, Christina Stitely spoke anyway.

Christina Stitely has two kids in the Chambersburg School District and says the new dress code has to go.

"We're not against a dress code. We just want it not to be the main focus,” Stitely explained.  “Our kids are here to be educated not to be picked on because of what clothes they're wearing."

Before the meeting started, angry parents protested in front of the CASD Administration building along with their children.

Mom Jackie Atchison brought close to 900 signatures on a petition she was hoping would persuade the district to change its new policy.

"I do not think that we are trying to be difficult. We really, honestly want to find some way around this," said Atchison.

"We want policy 221 gone! We want our rights back, to be able to say what our children can wear. And we want the old dress code back. You can enforce this dress code?  Enforce that one!" said parent Kerri Deibel.

The school board meeting room filled up so quickly they had to open other rooms.

Despite that, the superintendent says a vast majority of the parents are for the new dress code.

"Where are you finding these people that are so supportive of the dress code? Because the parents aren't and most of students aren't either," said Atchison.

"He lied, the vast majority do not like this. We all agree that we need a dress code however the dress code that is (in place) now is not working," said Stitely.

CASD Superintendent Joseph Padasak says the rules won't change this year, but the board will take parents' comments into consideration for next school year.

Hundreds of angry parents are expected to sound off at a Chambersburg Area School District school board meeting tonight.

The meeting starts at 7 p.m. and is a regularly scheduled board meeting, but parents plan to voice their concerns over the school's dress code.

CBS 21 will be there and will have the full story live at 11.Parents protest dress code school board meeting, Superintendent stands firm

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