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ETX father says son was placed in ISS for wearing Patriotic t-shirt, Superintendent denies ISS allegations

ETX father says son was placed in ISS for wearing Patriotic t-shirt, Superintendent denies ISS allegations
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The School Yard

POSTED: Thursday, October 24, 2013 - 4:27pm

UPDATED: Friday, November 1, 2013 - 3:19pm

An East Texas father is fighting a local school district after he says his son spent a day in In-School Suspension for refusing to change his shirt for what the school called a "controversial message," however, the school is denying the boy was placed in ISS.

Andy Davidson, Owner/President at Davidson Energy Services and Owner/Builder at Davidson Construction and Properties in Kilgore posted on his Facebook page he had an encounter with the assistant-principal and principal at Spring Hill Junior High School in Longview, regarding the text and message on the shirt his son wore to school. The t-shirt had the Bible verse, Romans 13:12, which states “The night is nearly over; the day is almost here. So let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light," printed on it.


Spring Hill Junior High School in Longview, Texas

Davidson told The Blaze, "I am proud my son stood up for his rights, choosing suspension instead of taking off a t-shirt that Davidson claims school officials found offensive."

Andy's son, an eighth-grader at Spring Hill Middle School, wore a shirt printed by Davidson's company Maker's Militia, which he started in 2012, that had an eagle printed in yellow on the front with the Bible verse on the back, an American flag on the left sleeve and a message which the district deemed "controversial," "God, guns and country."

According to Davidson, the Principal Kathy Parker told him, "Your son is wearing offensive apparel today. I believe it reads 'God, guns, country,' and we need to address this situation, by him either changing his clothes, or turning the shirt inside-out." Davidson says he then asked the principal who the message was offensive toward and the principal answered, "It's offensive to me, and I'm sure many others, both here at school and in public."

Davidson told The Blaze, Assistant-Principal Beau Vincent, stated he had been waiting for his son to wear the shirt to school again. Then, Andy says his son was taken to Principal Parker’s office where he was told he could either flip his shirt inside out or wear a school-issued shirt over it. His son refused to do either.


Kathy Parker, Principal                          Beau Vincent, Assistant Principal

Davidson went on to say administrators told his son to call his parents so that they could bring him another shirt. Davidson says he promptly drove to the school and proceeded to have an hour-long conversation with the school administration.

The principal asked him if he was going to make his son remove his shirt to which Davidson said he answered, "No, I am not going to make him take off his clothing that is designed in support of our creator and the constitution of the United States of America."

Davidson says Principal Parker threatened his son with an increasingly harsher punishment if he continued to wear clothing of this sort.

Davidson says he quickly responded by saying, "Very well, you should expect to hear from my attorney soon, and you should also contact your superiors to see if they also agree with your suppression and ignoring of the rights of your students and their tax paying parents. And by the way, you should be aware that shirts do not dictate nor have a behavior of their own, neither do guns. Good day, ma'am."

On page 22-24 of the Spring Hill Independent School District Student Code of Conduct, the dress code is lined out as follows:

"T-shirts or other clothing with pictures, logos, phrases, letters, or words printed on them that are obscene, suggestive, crude, or immoral in the judgment of the administration are prohibited. This shall include, but shall not be limited to nude/semi-nude figures, pictures or logos of alcoholic beverages and tobacco; obscene gestures; curse words; slang words; portrayal of drug paraphernalia; figures in suggestive postures; skulls and crossbones; and macabre words or graphics. If the principal determines that a student’s grooming or clothing violates the school’s dress code, the student will be given an opportunity to correct the problem at school. If not corrected, the student will be assigned to in-school suspension for the remainder of the day, until the problem is corrected, or until a parent or designee brings an acceptable change of clothing to the school. Repeated offenses may result in more serious disciplinary action in accordance with the Student Code of Conduct."

Wes Jones, Superintendent of Spring Hill Schools, released the following statement, Thursday, after the situation gained national media attention the day prior:


Superintendent, Wes Jones.

"Spring Hill ISD works to protect the well-being of our students, and as much as possible, to provide a learning environment without disruption. Due to the media attention given to recent public and school shootings, guns in schools have received a lot of attention. At our schools we want our students to feel safe and not threatened so they can concentrate on school activities. The JH administration asked that students not wear shirts at school that depicted knives, guns or other weapons.

Please understand that no student has been suspended or placed in ISS for wearing a shirt related to weapons. However, we will enforce our dress code as necessary to minimize disruptions at school, including protecting other students from messages or images that are threatening, promote violence, or otherwise disrupt the educational environment.

Again, no student has been suspended or placed in ISS for dress code due to wearing a shirt in reference to weapons. Due to student confidentiality I cannot speak publicly about a specific student's situation.

Please contact your student's campus if you have any questions."

Sincerely,
Wes Jones
Superintendent

An article has surfaced on the internet pegging Principal Parker as Adolf Hitler and the school district as "The New Gestapo." KETK reached out to the mother of the eighth-grader involved in this incident in regards to the matter concerning her son and to clarify neither she nor her son had anything to do with that article making its way around the web:

"My son's shirt in no way promotes gun violence. It is however in support of our constitutional rights including freedom of religion, freedom of speech and the Second Amendment. Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't the constitution taught in our schools? Are we going to ban history books now? I stand firm in my faith and protecting my son's constitutional rights. However, I do not approve of the link circulating Facebook referring to Spring Hill ISD as the "New Gestapo." I think the article is immature, tacky, disrespectful and highly offensive. I assure you my son nor I had any part in writing the article and apologize to anyone who may also be offended by it. Please do not associate my son or me with it. My son was not suspended. Any action that is taken in regards to this matter needs to be done tastefully, peacefully, truthfully and with class. It is hypocritical to be standing up for God in such a demeaning way. I would also like to add, after all the feedback that has been received, I believe the majority of Spring Hill students and parents disagree with the school's decision to prohibit or ban pro-God or pro-constitutional, non-violent nor aggressive shirts such as the one my son was wearing, Perhaps a district-wide vote for the students and parents would be the best way to solve this issue."

KETK has attempted to contact Andy Davidson after he agreed to an interview on Wednesday. Our calls, e-mails and messages have yet to be returned.

 


 

Comments News Comments

Has anyone read the comments from the school? They did NOT put the kid in ISS and the shirt that Andy posted was not the actual shirt that his son wore. If anyone knows Mr. Davidson (as I do) they would know he's not a "truth teller". There are 2 Sides to every story. The sons mother also made a stmt that neither she NOR her son agrees to what is being said. There's a reason that he's all of a sudden not available for an interview......potential boost for his t-shirt sales? Don't buy into it

I thought so

Our government is NOT based on religion at all but the freedom of each person to believe in any religion they chose to believe in or NOT to believe in any religion at all if they so chose without persecution or discrimination from or by any person , group of people or any form of government. None of you can point to any Christian teaching that states that Jesus wanted his teachings forced on anyone. Free Will to believe because you want to believe in him is the only way NOT FORCE.

shrinkingrandma United States was not founded on words from the Bible. Nor does the Constitution or Declaration of Independence or any other article written by our founding fathers refer to Jusus or the Bible. This country was NOT founded and built on the principles of the Bible, Jesus Christ and Christianity.Tell us all where in the Constitution & Declaration is Jesus mentioned.

This kind of petty stuff is why so many Private schools are being formed. Public schools are becoming political and education of the students comes second.The administrators and some teachers need to clean up their act every time you pick the paper up one of them has done something illegal one guilty one this week.Fine examples they are showing our kids.

NOW I get it!! All ultra-conservatives would like the following to happen...okay...you would like a White, blond, blue-eyed, YOUR religion, loaded gun safe owning United States (Nazi-like?)! Some of you don't care about the poor, the un-employed, the under- or un-insured, the hungry, the under-educated, those who don't fit your social strata, those who don't have as much of everything you do, and on and on...and you might call yourselves Christians? We must read different Bibles, folks.

To shovelhead(idiot)...I suggest that the next time the Mosque in Tyler opens it's doors to all to visit, ask questions, observe their prayers, and eat the beautiful meal the women of the Mosque prepare for their guests, shovel and all others take advantage of their invitation and go see for yourselves what a gracious, peaceful, welcoming group of AMERICANS they are. You fear what you don't know, folks, and condemning a whole people for the actions of a relative few radicals is un-CHRISTIAN.

Since when is the commandment to kill all infidels(i.e. unbelievers of islam) and the raping of young kids peaceful?

where is that written arkreb68? chapter and verse?

To get this out of the way up front, I am a Christian first AND a loyal American...this country was founded so that all citizens could have the right to observe a religious tradition or not, NOT as a one-religion country. If, in fact, all of you agree with this daddy, then a Muslim daddy, a Jewish daddy, a Hindu daddy, etc. can also send his son or daughter to school wearing religious/gun/political-leaning T-shirts, too. Do you deny others just to advance one religious/gun/political belief?

I couldn't open my laptop fast enough. This is the stupidest thing I have heard today! Let these parents visit their elementary or junior high schools and read the policy that their parents signed at the beginning of each year they attended. They too will find that in no shape or fashion shall a child wear any clothing advertising guns OF ANYKIND! Your NOT standing up for your son! You are simply acting out this generations issues "the wah generation"! Cry about everything!

Daddy is producing an entitled young man...a kid who has little respect for those who have more than this little man to consider when establishing standards for school decorum...anyone who applauds this obviously right-wing evangelical ultra-conservative gun-toting daddy probably doesn't respect superiors, authority or standards, either. Do not applaud those who want to make trouble, and especially those who use their children as pawns in their efforts.

I so agree with you lrrp2swife I believe she's a big bully

2 sides to every story - how do we know what the parent said about the principle is true - do he record her words ?? Student handbook has policy on clothing and if he didn't follow that then he needed to be called on it !

oops *** Did he record her words

This does not surprise me with the way the liberal school system is today. I used to hear something about "freeddom of speech", but now I guess it's "freedom to say what we tell you, you can say". I totally agree that the prinsipal should be removed. If not, after the lawsuit, that young man should not have to worry about paying for college or anything else for the rest of his life.

The problem with schools is that they have quit standing up for our rights as an American! I am so glad that my children go to a school where they still say the Pledge every morning and allow the children that want to pray to do so. See you at the flag is something that almost all of the kids at our school participate in. It is amazing to see all of those kiddos from K-12 gathered at the pole :) God bless this child and his father for standing up for their God given rights!

I support the freedom to wear whatever clothes any person deems fit as long as there is no profanity or nudity. It is a matter of freedom of speech. My son was sent home several times for having pictures of guns on his shirt from Denton ISD. (Guns and Roses and other band shirts.) I thought it was humorously ridiculous but infuriating as well. Who has ever been injured by a picture of a gun?????? Sheesh.

Would Mr. Davidson support the rights of a student to wear the same shirt with a verse from theQuran on it in place of the Bible verse? Chapter 6 Surah Anaam verse 1: Praise be to Allah Who created the heavens and the earth and made the darkness and the light. Yet those who reject faith hold (others) as equal with their Guardian-Lord. And the words "Allah, guns and country." with an American flag on the left sleeve ? If he wouldn't then he is being political & trying to stir up trouble for gain

First off the Quran has nothing to do with our culture, religion or the USA, it belongs to Muslims and the Middle east, not the United States, just like English is the national language in the USA not Spanish. People all through our history have came here to be Americans, not Europeans, Scottish, French, etc, but Americans. They may have been French, European, etc, but came here for one reason and one reason only, to be Americans. Today they come trying to change this country and make it theirs.

AMEN

arkreb68,
What does the Constitution say about that? Do we not have U.S. citizens that are muslims? What rights would you be violating of those citizens under the constitution arkreb?
You are not too bright about the constitution are you?

Suz said - First off the Quran has nothing to do with our culture, religion or the USA,

Are you sure about that suz? What does the Constitution say about that? We do not have U.S. citizens that are muslims? What rights would you be violating suz?

Stir up trouble you suggest??? Let's quickly review the history of 'THIS' country, not the Middle East,or anywhere else, shall we? Let's quickly review the "spiritual foundation" on which 'THIS' country was founded, NOT some country in the Middle East, or elsewhere shall we? The United States of America was founded, as documented, by those who believed in and espoused the tenants and teachings of God, the ONE AND "ONLY" TRUE GOD...the Father of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ...not anyone else

and where is that written, John? I have never seen the name Jesus Christ in any of the founding documents. They do mention "GOD", whos' GOD John?

This country was founded and built on the principles of the Bible, Jesus Christ and Christianity, not the nation of islam, muslims or the quran. Thats the difference here, sir. Those are simply facts and not opinion. It has been proven time and time again in the last 10 years alone that muslims are a violent cult that demeans woman, children and promotes violence. Why would anyone try to compare that to Christianity???

If that is a FACT then you should be able to produce document proof shovel.

If you will read a document written by one of our founding fathers in 1795, ratified by congress and signed by the president of the United States of America called the Treaty of Tripoli. It states in that treaty that the U. S. is NOT a Christian Nation.

Try again Your FACTS are just that your facts but are not true facts at all.

I love the point you are making and agree with you completely. I would absolutely support the wearing of the shirt you mention because I believe in fairness and equality but I know many would not. Good point you are making.

I have no idea what the agenda of the father or student was, but this ridiculous idea of anything referring to the Bible, guns, God, etc. being offensive is out of hand. The United States was not founded on words from the Quran. Nor does the Constitution or Declaration of Independence or any other article written by our founding fathers refer to Allah or the Quran. This shirt would be offensive in a Muslim nation, which I have no problem with.

I agree lajohnson but, it appears that the father was using his son to make a political statement &/or to drive his sales of such shirts up by this controversy. It appears, although not stated in the story that the school had spoken to Mr. Davidson or sent a note home prior to this incident & Mr. Davidson knew that the school did not want his son to wear that shirt to school again. I wonder if Mr. Davidson would support a muslim student wearing that same shirt with a verse from the quran on it?

No note needed to be sent home prior! At the beginning of the school year EVERY child goes home with a copy of the dress code and must be signed by parent. Yep I'd like to see which parent signed this and sent it back to school? LoL Obviously this is advertisement for the 'wah generation' daddy!

Stupid dad. I'm a parent, a Christian, a republican. If an authority figure at a middle school asks a student to change his shirt because it has the word "gun" on it, then the student needs to respect authority and obey. The fact that the cry-baby daddy is calling his attorney is why our public school system is so messed up. My child isn't allowed to play tag near the play structure at school because someone might get hurt. Now I can tell my kid who to thank for these rules: Andy + Attorney.

Are you sure you're not a Communist troll? The problem the school system and every other system is so messed up is because of sheeple like you, who take political correctness way beyond acceptable levels. This father was protecting the rights and freedoms of his son, and fighting for the constitution. If you have a problem with that, why don't you live somewhere that's not as free as America? At least it used to be, before your kind started crying about f--king T-shirts. You are a complete idiot

Are you sure you're not a the Communist troll, AV? You think you have the right to force your religion on others that do not believe the same as you.

If we all continue to lay down and not fight for our freedoms we will lose them. I really hope you will take a moment and think about your position on this. This may only be a small issue but the will to stand up and fight for your rights is a much more important moral issue than you are understanding. Much greater than our military fighting over seas for our "freedom" is the fight right here on our own soil. We HAVE to begin to understand what freedom is and where that fight lies.

This student wore a Guns N Roses shirt the day before. It had the word Guns on it just the same. Tell me what the difference is?

As a graduate from Spring Hill ISD - I am absolutely APPALLED! I encourage parents who have students attending SHISD to visit with board members, and past students to do the same. How DARE some "principal" turn our school into a liberal zombieland!

This is outrageous that our right and our children's rights are violated by people who enjoy the freedom that our military fought to give them! I think the administration needs to be fired!

I applaud the young man for standing up for his right to wear the t-shirt. The principal should be removed from his position immediately for violating this childs beliefs. I also applaud his father for standing behind his child. I would have done the same. This is exactly what is wrong with this country. Schools spend more time on ridiculous rules afraid of offending someone than teaching them the skills needed to suceed in life. It is the parents tax dollars paying your salary.

Right on! Protect our freedoms by exercising them! Smart mom. I am so glad to see some intelligent reactions.

I agree. I was a teacher once, past tense, and was angered by the administration always wanting to put their beliefs in front of the rights of students thus pigeon holing every student to meet the wishes of spoiled parents. We are all AMERICAN not anything else. The majority of Americans were born here. Only a select few can claim to dual citizenships. As Americans we have the right to stand up for our beliefs. Offending??? So be it. God is real to him and others. Amen

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