This isn’t ‘Nam, folks. This is Wichita East High School, and there are rules.

So say officials at Wichita East, who are now facing criticism for forcing a student with special needs to remove his high school letterman’s jacket.

Michael Kelley is a Wichita East student who has Down’s Syndrome and autism, according to a report from local station KSN. He plays for its special-needs basketball team, which is a club sports team and not a varsity squad.

Wichita East principal Ken Thiessen confirmed that to KSN, saying, “Teachers told the parents they would prefer he not wear the letter on his jacket.”

“We have considered it, and our decision was no,” he told the local news station. “We decided that is not appropriate in our situation because it is not a varsity level competition.”

Jolinda says she would like to see a rule change at the school that encourages every student-athlete who “plays their hardest and to the best of their capability regardless what that is.”

But for now it seems Michael will have to wear his sweatshirt to school and leave the jacket at home. After all, this isn’t ‘Nam. There are rules.

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