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PHILADELPHIA (Reuters) - Singer Nancy Sinatra may have had boots made for walking, but she never attended Pottstown Middle School.
Starting Monday the Philadelphia suburban district is banning the wearing of fuzzy open-top boots, including the popular Ugg brand, to middle school classes because students have been stashing cell phones in the loose footwear, according to district director of community relations John Armato.
"Cell phones are a problem for obvious reasons," Armato said.
Superintendent Reed Lindley said the school principal asked for the boot ban "because of the classroom disruptions that are resulting from ringing cell phones."
Students at the school can avoid going toe-to-toe with school officials by wearing boots that lace up and usually have a snugger fit.
First time offenders will get detention, and subsequent violations include two detentions, followed by confiscation of the phone, Armato said.
Middle school parent Adrienne Beyer said she thinks the ban is extreme.
"I understand there may be a handful of kids that shove cell phones down their boots, but why does the handful have to ruin it for the other 600 students? But, I said to my daughter, 'It's a rule and we're going to follow it,'" Beyer said.
Ugg sheepskin boots originated in Australia and New Zealand and have become popular with pre-teens and teenagers in the United States in recent years.
Editing By Barbara Goldberg and Greg McCune