Craig Middle School students push for policy change | CraigDailyPress.com

Craig Middle School students push for policy change

— Early in the school year two Craig Middle School students found themselves briefly suspended for violating the school rules on face painting.

Sisters Carmelita Bays and SaraJo Smith were suspended from CMS for one day for wearing eyeliner on their cheeks in support of awareness of the disease Chiari malformation.

The controversy surrounding their actions and the school’s response triggered a student-led, student council task force that reviewed the face paint rules.

Lara Sigmon, CMS counselor and the student council adviser, said the effort showed a lot of initiative to make a change.

"I am really proud of our student council," she said. "They did a lot of investigating and asked a lot of questions of our students."

As a result students declared a "wish to bring face paint back to our school," as stated in the report Student Council President Kimber Wheeler and Vice President Lauren Hilley presented to the Board of Education on Thursday.

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"The original rules prevent any face paint on campus," Wheeler said. "The new rules allow face paint with permission. The school has to set a date."

Students may nominate special days to support special causes and make their case to the student council.

That leadership group will present proposals to the principal and assistant principal who will ultimately decide days when face paint is allowed.

"If rules are broken, such as a student wearing too much face paint, then there are consequences to the individual," Wheeler said.

The new rule applies to face paint and makeup but not to colored hair spray, or writing on the body or clothing with ink because of the messiness of inks and sprays, according to the council report.

The new rule is expected to appear in student handbooks in the fall.

"I am happy with how (CMS Principal) Mr. Grabowski handled the issue," said Superintendent of Schools Dave Ulrich. "He was able to make this an opportunity to engage students in how to effect change in a positive manner."

Contact Sasha Nelson at 970-875-1794 or snelson@CraigDailyPress.com or follow her on Twitter @CDP_Education.