A security guard and three other employees at a high school in the suburbs of Detroit, Mich. refused to allow a lieutenant colonel in the United States Army to enter the school because he was wearing his military uniform.
The incident occurred on Tuesday at Rochester Adams High School, reports Detroit Fox affiliate WJBK.
The man denied entry to the school is Lt. Col. Sherwood Baker, a 24-year Army veteran whose military career has included visits to Iraq and Afghanistan.
Baker was visiting the taxpayer-funded public school with his daughter, he said, because he wanted to speak with her counselor about her schedule.
“He was told in order to get into Rochester Adams High School he needed to take off his uniform,” Baker’s wife, Rachel Ferhadson, told WJBK.
“Before he was allowed in, the security guard stopped him and said, ‘Sorry you’re not allowed in the school.’ The security guard told him that men and women in uniform weren’t allowed because it may offend another student.”
The security guard advised Baker to go home, change into civilian clothes and come back.
Baker’s daughter, Kelly, spoke glowingly about her father and his recent return home.
“I was really, really happy that he was back,” she told the Fox station. “He’s been really kind and always asks me how my day is after I come home from school.”
She also noted that other Americans have treated her father and her family much better than the employees at Rochester Adams High did.
“I remember one time somebody paid for our dinner,” she said.
Rochester school district Superintendent Robert Shaner, a military veteran, has promised to rectify the situation.
In a statement obtained by WJBK, the superintendent said, “The district has apologized for any perception that individuals in uniform are not welcome in the school. The district does not have a policy excluding individuals in uniform and will be working with administration and the firm that handles our security to make sure district policies are understood and communicated accurately.”
Baker said he will schedule a meeting with Rochester Adams High principal to discuss the incident.
According to the school district website, the principal is Kevin Cumming.
U.S. News has called Rochester Adams the eighth-best high school in the state of Michigan.