Editor, the Leader-News:

I am writing this letter because I believe that our school district administration has not shared the full story about how the Ricebird football team will honor the flag of our country at all the games to be played in this season.

I was told about what happened at the first two games and read the article in the Sept. 16 Leader-News. The impression is given that the team will be on the field for the National Anthem and honoring of our flag, but this does not say if they will be standing and showing respect.

I called the superintendent, Bob Callaghan about the policy of ECISD on honoring the flag and he told me that he and the coaches and high school administration had met with the team and told them they have a constitutional right to kneel in protest if they choose to do so. He said he did not know if some would choose to take a knee.

As a former public school administrator and a taxpayer, I do not believe that students in a program which is part of the school athletic program have the right to determine the routines and procedures to be followed while enrolled in that activity.

I sincerely hope that when and if this letter is published there will be no possibility that the Ricebird football team will have dishonored the flag and the anthem that so many have died for to give them the opportunity to live in the land of the free.

God bless America,

Tish McAlister

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