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One suburban Chicago school district has no use for “the few and the proud.”
McHenry High School West Campus officials are under fire because they wouldn’t allow graduate Megan Howerton, who is also a U.S. Marine, walk in her graduation ceremony while proudly displaying her uniform in lieu of the traditional cap and gown.
The school claimed that her Marine dress blues constituted a dress code violation, according to NBC Chicago Channel 5 News.
Parents, fellow students as well as veterans were outraged, and took to social media using the hashtag, “LetMeganWalk.
She can Protect our country but you won’t let her walk in her blues #letmeganwalk
— Erika Vahst (@erika_vahst) May 19, 2016
— Valerie (@duchess1201) May 22, 2016
She earned an honor higher than high school & did it before her classmates even finished school.. Shameful act by the school #letmeganwalk
— dave bradley (@dj_killshot) May 22, 2016
— VacateTheChair (@NvrRyan) May 21, 2016
The school district issued a statement the following day that said, “the attention related to last night’s graduation ceremony at McHenry High School West Campus is unfortunate and draws attention away from the collective achievements of the Class of 2016.” The statement continued:
“The district and administration in no way looked to prevent the participation of this graduate or any graduate who has chosen to serve our nation,” the statement read. “Rather, the administration communicated in advance via letter, senior meeting, and practice, all the protocols expected of graduates, including attire. In some past cases, active-duty students elected to wear their gowns over top of their military uniforms, with their military hats, which was allowed. There was no communication to the administration that attire protocols would not be followed prior to the ceremony. The tradition of cap and gown regalia is aimed at the idea that our graduates are celebrated as a whole and in similar attire.”
However, NBC Chicago reported that “According to the U.S. Marine Corps Uniform Board, wearing a cap and gown over a uniform is not allowed as it is considered similar to outerwear.”
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Clip via NBC Chicago
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