Uproar As Special Needs Student Is Stripped Of His Varsity Jakcet
This is one of those stories that really grates and sticks with you. Michael Kelly is a student at East High School in Wichita, Kansas. Michael suffers from Downs Syndrome and autism. His big love is basketball and so he plays on the school’s special needs team.
Michael’s mother purchased a varsity letter and placed it onto his jacket. For some reason one horrid parent complained to the school – believing that only varsity members should be able to wear the letters on their jackets.
The school opted to agree with the complaining parent and asked Michael to remove the letter, in the meantime he was given a girls sweater to wear.
Principal Ken Thiessen said:
“We have considered (allowing special needs students to wear varsity letters) and our decision was no. That is not appropriate … because it is not a varsity-level competition.”
Unsurprisingly this decision didn’t sit well with a lot of people. A Twitter campaign was started using the hashtag #GiveThemLetters, and Michael’s sister started it by tweeting:
“my brother was told to remove his letter from his letterman jacket because he was special needs and did not earn it #GiveThemLetters”
You can also sign the online petition if you wish, it’s already gained over 40,000 supporters.
Here’s the news report in full, tell us your thoughts in the comments.