Wheelchair Athlete Gets High School Letter
By Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
April 4, 2003
WAUWATOSA, WISCONSIN--It was all just a misunderstanding.
That's what Wauwatosa West High School Principal Tom Steiner and Superintendent Robert Slotterback said about the school's decision not to grant an athletic letter to Tony Sylvester.
Sylvester, a 16-year-old sophomore, was told he could not earn a coveted chenille "W" for his athletic jacket because his wheelchair basketball team isn't affiliated with his school.
"We don't give letters to kids who don't participate in the (school) sport," Slotterback told the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel early Thursday.
The refusal angered Tony and his mother, Tish, who planned to bring up the issue before the school board.
By the time of the Thursday's school board meeting, a crowd of supporters -- some in wheelchairs -- were expecting to rally in support of Sylvester.
But just a few hours before the meeting, the school district reversed its decision and agreed to award Sylvester the letter.
"I'm glad he's getting it," said his mom. "But I feel like I'm being swept under the rug."
"What about the future Tonys?" she asked.
"Wheelchair athlete gets Tosa West letter" (Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel