The Rolens are a proud military family, from the flag outside their Providence Village house to the photographs inside. Phil Rolen and his wife are both Air Force veterans, and their twin daughters, Kaidence and Abigail, were born on an Air Force post. So it’s no surprise that they purchased new coats to go to Aubrey Middle School. The Air Force ones they chose—they may have swayed them a little bit, Phil admitted.
The twins bought the jackets with money they earned by selling cakes in a jar, but they weren’t prepared for the reception they got from instructors when they walked into their fifth-grade classes. She shouted at her and claimed it was against the dress code and that she would get her in trouble if she wore anything that was against the dress code, Kaidence said.
Phil Rolen, a handicapped Iraq War veteran, was irritated when he heard of the school’s request to put the jackets on. When he contacted the principal, he was informed that the Air Force emblem was OK, but it was just too big for the dress code. Phil said he has a bit of a rebellious streak in him, so when he talked with the principle, he informed her they’d still be wearing them. He is hoping the district will employ common sense, but they’re not backing down.
Phil is certain that his twin children will continue to wear their sweaters, even if it means disciplinary punishment or switching schools. He stated that he is simply not going to raise his kids in a way where they have to tiptoe around their patriotism and civics. They don’t have a problem with clothing rules. It’s an issue of civics as well as patriotism.
The size of the logos violates the dress code, according to the school system. Kids may wear solid-color ‘hoodies’ with logos (including military logos) no larger than 1 1/2 inches by 1 1/2 inches. Kids may wear bigger logoed outerwear to and from school, on the bus, to sports and after-school events, but they must be placed in lockers during the school day, Aubrey ISD Superintendent Debby Sanders said.
Nonetheless, Phil is perplexed by the school’s position on the topic. He said he was prepared for this battle. He will make it his personal duty to cover the district for every news source in the nation. The lack of respect for their military forces here is astounding. Use common sense.
Phil believes that the dress code guideline, not his girls’ clothes, should be changed. He said that they’ve probably had greater clashes in life. The district has a blanket policy that prohibits administrators from making sensible exceptions to laws that he believes most Texans would agree are completely unnecessary.
When Phil raised the subject with Aubrey Middle School Principal Karen Wright, she was friendly, but she stressed that the jackets broke the regulations and that his girls would risk detention if they continued to wear them. Phil also expressed amazement that this could happen in a tiny Texas town where the students still repeat the Pledge of Allegiance over the loudspeaker every morning.
After receiving criticism from irate social media users, the school district opted to remove the contentious restriction on prominent military emblems after Aubrey ISD Superintendent Debby Sanders completed a review of the school’s dress code. Sanders said, they have decided to allow kids to wear greater military emblems. Until the dress code can be reconsidered, Aubrey ISD will allow kids to wear official United States military emblems of any size on hoodies.
Superintendent Sanders said that they have no animosity against the military services. Aubrey ISD enthusiastically supports the armed forces personnel and military veterans who have done so much for their nation, she stated. It is their pride and obligation to assist their service members, and Aubrey ISD will continue to do so.
The school district administration was completely incorrect on that, Phil Rolen said. They were pleased that they decided to change their judgment. That’s all there is to it. The Aubrey Independent School District amended its policy as a result of the strength of social media users banding together.
This article emphasizes the dissatisfaction that some Americans have with public schooling. In this situation, the regulations were implemented without regard for common sense. There is no justification why schoolchildren should not be free to express their solidarity for our courageous men and women in uniform loudly and proudly. This was never a war that should have been waged, but credit to Phil for standing up for what’s right.