Confederate flags banned at Kanawha County High School following - WOWK 13 Charleston, Huntington WV News, Weather, Sports

Confederate flags banned at Kanawha County High School following early morning incident

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Cody Daugherty is a senior at Sissonville High School Cody Daugherty is a senior at Sissonville High School
Mid-September means Homecoming Week for Sissonville High School, in Kanawha County.  Each day has a theme.  One of those days is "I Love America Day", a day chosen by the students, according to Principal, Ron Reedy.  

Thursday morning, 15 or so vehicles pulled into the school lot with American and confederate flags flying.  That's when students and staff said a problem arose.

Reedy said, "One of the staff wanted the students to take down the Confederate flag and actually the American flag, both, reasoning that it would be distracting to drivers going by."

I asked what the "distraction" was.  Reedy said he could not speak for the staff member in question.

Cody Daugherty is a senior.  He said, "We looked back, and was headed up the parking lot and a teacher was yanking the flags out of our trucks and throwing them in the bed of our trucks.  I looked back, and another one was on my truck."

Daugherty admitted, the students had parked their vehicles in a manner that would make a good photo-op before school, not in designated spots. He also admitted, when he saw the teacher on his truck, a heated argument ensued.  

However, Daugherty said, what angered him went beyond the issue of his flags that were perched on his vehicle.  "He [the staff member] got on my truck without permission.  He didn't have no right to do that.  If they would've asked kindly for us to take down the flag we would've."

Reedy said, "I'm not exactly sure what that staff member was thinking at that time, I cannot speak for that person."  I asked, "Do you support the decision of that staff member, that it was a distraction?"

"I have told our students before that they have their first amendment right to free expression so long as it doesn't distract from the educational mission," Reedy replied.  "The fact that they were flying it at the time wouldn't have necessarily bothered me.  However, the staff member at that time declared that they shouldn't have it."

Daugherty, and three others were given the option of three weeks of Saturday school or 3 days suspension.  All but one chose Saturday school, the students said.  Reedy said the punishment that was given to the students was the direct result of the disrespect towards school staff.  He said it had nothing to do with the flags.

We asked if that the staff members in question were reprimanded, Reedy said he cannot discuss personnel issues.

Friday Sissonville is taking on Scott High School for their Homecoming football game. 

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