Hopefully our resident ROO's, Clarkson and Mohawk will chime in on this, but here is my two cents as an Army dad:
Your DS should do the following.
- Clarify his priority: Is the primary goal to serve as an officer or graduate from USMA? (Nothing wrong with either answer, just know which comes first!)
- If USMA means everything to him, then he should be assertive enough to explain himself to the Cadre. I agree with Kinnem that the attitudes may vary by battalion, but my DS says his is very supportive of those who reapply. Plus it allows for another nomination source!
- If his priority is to serve as an officer, then I would point out that the fastest route to commissioning is to stay put! Your DS would receive his bars a year later if he is accepted to USMA. It sounds like he is thriving at his battalion.
If he really wishes to go to West Point, this is an opportunity to grow as a person by persuading the PMS to back him in seeking the appointment. It will NOT be the last time in his career that he will be asking for support from a potentially reluctant advocate!
Most PMS's understand that the best AROTC cadets will often reapply to WP and some will be accepted. I believe that the majority of Cadre members will be understanding and consider it a feather in their cap to assist a cadet in receiving an appointment.
In my DS's MS-I year two years ago, I asked him if he wanted to reapply to the academies. His answer was, "why? If I get accepted, I will be one year behind my goal of commissioning in 2019!"
I didn't ever bring it up again.
Good luck to your DS in whichever path he chooses.