Gary Rogers (2003-2005)
Episodes: 3512, 3594, 3700-3711, 3799, 3906, 4023
Children: Jane Rogers
The president of the school P&C committee, Rogers was first seen at an emergency meeting after Nick and Seb found marijuana in the pocket of one of the aprons in the school woodworks room. He and some of the other parents wanted the police informed and the school lockers searched in order to find the culprit, bringing them into conflict with Paris and Sally who felt they should respect the students’ rights. He was seen again soon after Tasha had enrolled at Summer Bay High and assaulted a teacher and seemed to take a dim view of the whole affair. When Beth joined the committee some months later, Rogers was speaking in support of the disciplinary attitude Barry Hyde had brought to the school. Beth disagreed with his views that the school had to give children moral values and, when Rogers became personal and attacked her family, notably Kit’s alcoholism, replied that she was proud of her and the more nurturing atmosphere Paris had fostered had helped her get on with her life. The committee ended up voting for Beth to replace Rogers as president, prompting him to leave the meeting bemoaning the hours of unpaid work he had given the school.
Rogers was given further reason to disapprove of the Sutherlands when Jade led a lock-in at the school in protest over Barry’s authoritarian attitude. Rogers was the one who first discovered the lock-in when he called his daughter Jane, one of the participants, and demanded she tell him where she was. He descended on the school with several other parents, including Rhys and Beth, and held them accountable both as Jade’s parents and as P&C president. When Barry turned up, he was unhappy with his handling of the affair, reminding him he had failed to live up to the promises he had made when appointed and objecting to his decision to cut off amenities to the school to flush the protesters out instead of negotiating or calling the police, especially since Jane didn’t have her asthma medication with her. When Kim turned up and got into an argument with Barry over Barry hiding the fact Kim had a child from him, Rogers made a few comments about Barry’s own parenting skills.
Rogers found himself on the same side as Rhys and Beth, to the discomfort of all involved, when they opposed Jesse’s plans to set up a licensed premises at the surf club. He addressed the P&C meeting on the subject, deriding both the proposal and Jesse’s character, but quickly sat down when Jesse arrived at the meeting. The vote ended up going against them after Kirsty and Kane revealed Matilda and Henry’s story of being attacked by a drunk was a lie.
He continued to make occasional appearances the following year, being present at the town meeting Peter called to discuss the newspaper claims about the Summer Bay Stalker, doubting Peter’s insistence that the incidents were unrelated and pointing to the police’s mishandling of Sarah Lewis. He was in the Diner when Harry Chambers was handing out fliers about Jack killing his daughter and joined Martha and Colleen in supporting him. He continued to speak in support of Chambers’ view at the meeting but wasn’t seen again after Tony had spoken.