An Ohio school district that experienced tragedy eight years ago has banned the display of the thin blue line version of the American flag after students carried it onto the field before a high school football game on Friday night.
“Based on discussions that ensued over the weekend, it does not appear that this action was motivated by racism, rather a show of support for one of our coaches who serves as a police officer, as well as for the first responders in our community who have developed a special relationship with our school and students in the wake of our school tragedy of February 27, 2012,” Hanlon wrote on Monday.
“Our school district is fundamentally anti-racist as reflected in Board of Education policies ranging from Equal Employment Opportunity to matters of student and staff activities. Our goal is to ensure that all students, staff and community members are provided the same opportunities to grow and learn in Chardon Schools and that this occurs in an environment that values the contributions of every school community member. Our staff members work to support that goal in our classrooms and through lessons learned within the scope of extracurricular activities.”
According to the statement, the superintendent also said that school district policy does “not permit engagement in political activity.” The thin blue line flag represents the men and women in blue standing as a line between law and order and is displayed as a show of police pride and solidarity, proponents say. Others says it is a symbol of white supremacy.
“Nevertheless, it is important to emphasize that we clearly understand how this action could be perceived as political in nature. As a result, this display will not be a part of future pregame activities at Chardon athletic contests. In addition, measures will be put in place by our Athletic Director to review any planned pregame displays for possible connections to any form of discrimination or particular political views,” Hanlon said.
In 2012, six students were shot on campus by a former Chardon student on the morning of Feb. 27, resulting in the death of three.
From News Observer