Teens Suspended for Confederate Flag Wear
More than 20 students at a Virginia high school were suspended Thursday after wearing clothes depicting the Confederate flag, USA TODAY reports.
The students wore the offensive attire in protest of Christianburg High School’s ban of the emblem.
Twenty-five students arrived at the school violating the Confederate flag ban, according to Montgomery County Public Schools spokeswoman Brenda Drake. Twenty-one of the 25 students refused to comply when challenged by school officials and were issued one-day, in-school suspensions.
The school bans students from wearing clothes that oppose diversity and acceptance. This year, the district banned Confederate flags on students’ vehicles.
Drake said 15 penalties were changed to out-of-school suspensions after many of the students “proceeded to disrupt the school environment through loud displays and behavior.”
“We value our students’ First Amendment rights, but we must maintain an orderly and safe environment for all students,” Drake told USA Today. “Incidents of racial tension at CHS support the continued prohibition of the Confederate flag in the building.”
The school system has provided social justice and diversity training for both staff members and students since 2002. But Drake said it has had to deal with incidents of “racially motivated” behavior as of late.
“We are not issuing a judgment on the flag, but know that not allowing it at CHS supports a peaceful educational environment in the building,” said Drake.