Sat Jul 23 16:17:33 PDT 2016
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Confederate flags flying at school causing stir
Ken Curtis

Confederate flags flying in the parking lot of a school is causing a stir among some parents in Ozark. The flags are on two pickup trucks driven by students at Carroll High. “When our children come to school and see something like this they may feel the need to protect themselves,” said parent Shamara McLeod. Felicia Smith agrees, saying she took a photo of the flags after dropping her daughter off at school Friday. Smith posted it on Facebook and that ignited the controversy. Superintendent Dr. Rick McInturf said he understands people’s sensitivity to the issue, especially considering its association with hate crimes. However, he points out that the two students involved have not violated school policy or law. “We have checked with our attorney and the police department and there are no violations. The students are well within their rights.” McInturf said administrators spoke to the students regarding the issue but they opted not to remove the flags. “We are monitoring the situation on campus but the school environment has not been impacted,” he said. McInturf said the flag has been displayed on one of the trucks for most of the school year. However, another student recently placed flags on his truck and that may have led to increased public scrutiny especially since the two vehicles were parked side-by-side Friday. McLeod and Smith call the display of the flags “disrespectful.”

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