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Funny newsletter helps clarify dress code at junior high

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MT. OLYMPUS — The dress code is a common source of conflict between students and administrators at many schools. It's tough to determine what's fashionable and appropriate and what crosses the line.

Right now, Churchill Junior High is trying to do just that. The major issue surrounds leggings.

They're a trendy item right now, often seen gracing the pages of magazines. But the district does not think leggings should be used as pants.

One mom decided to try and drive the point home with a little humor. Paula Colman writes the "Charger Chatter," a weekly newsletter sent to parents of Churchill Junior High.

When the leggings trend started taking the school by storm, "I immediately thought of Will Ferrell in ‘Elf' and his costume," she said.

Colman decided to address it in this week's edition. "Leggings are not pants. Tights are not pants. Unless you are an elf," she said.

Also a certain reality trio came to mind.

"It involved several of the Kardashian sisters and I said, ‘OK, I understand the problem now.'"

The newsletter is going viral, putting a positive spin on a touchy topic.


"I don't think people know who writes the newsletter," said daughter Olivia Coleman. "My friends don't."

Thought the secret may be out now, and Olivia Colman is proud of her mom's work..

"I think it's pretty funny. I thought the elf reference was creative," she said.

District Spokesman, Ben Horsley says dress code is not dictated at a district level. Rather, each school sets the guidelines. As for the humorous approach at Churchill, he's on board.

"I think it's entirely appropriate to compare some of our students to Buddy the Elf," he said. "That's really how they look. It's pretty ridiculous."

"We had to lighten the tone," Coleman said." The school didn't want to bring a hammer down on anybody. They just wanted to make it clear what was appropriate and what would make everybody comfortable."

Lighten the mood she did. Now, leggings aren't banned — students can still wear them. The rule is you must wear an appropriate top that fully covers them..


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Ashley Kewish


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