Calling for the removal of the Confederate battle flag from public schools in the School District.
WHEREAS, since the end of the Civil War, the Confederate battle flag, and other imagery of the Confederacy have been appropriated by groups as symbols of hate, terror, intolerance, and as supportive of the institution of slavery; and
WHEREAS, after the Civil War ended, groups such as the Ku Klux Klan were formed to promote White supremacy and racial hatred. The Ku Klux Klan, perhaps the most infamous, was one of the first groups to continue using the Confederate flag after the war. The Ku Klux Klan rallied others still vexed after the war to instill fear and spout hate against freed African Americans; and
WHEREAS, the flag was later resurrected in the 1950s to rally resistance to the Civil Rights movement and support the South’s desire to maintain segregation and further the policies of Jim Crow; and
WHEREAS, since the end of the Civil War, private and official use of the Confederacy’s flags, and of flags with derivative designs, has continued and generated philosophical, political, cultural, and racial controversy in the United States. These include flags displayed in states, cities, towns, counties, schools, colleges, or universities, or by private organizations, associations, or by individuals; and
WHEREAS, to many groups, especially African Americans, the Confederate flag is a symbol of hate, racism, exclusion, oppression, and violence. Its symbolism and history are directly linked to the enslavement, torture, and murder of millions of African Americans; and
WHEREAS, though a minute number of groups disagree, claiming that the Confederate flag commemorates Southern heritage. today, as in the past, public display of the Confederate flag continues to instill fear, intimidation, and act as a direct threat of violence towards others; and
WHEREAS, continuing to display a symbol of hatred, oppression, and insurrection that nearly tore our Union apart and that is known to offend many groups throughout the country would irreparably damage the reputation of this august institution and offend the very dignity of the State; and
WHEREAS, for millions of Americans, the Confederate battle flag is a symbol of intolerance, injustice, and inequality; and
WHEREAS, the Confederate battle flag has always been recognized as a deeply offensive symbol of opposition to civil rights legislation, integration, justice, education, and access to equal opportunity; and
WHEREAS, the Board of Education of (district) in (city), (state/province), believes it is in the District’s interest to promote unity rather than divisiveness among its citizens, starting with our youngest schoolchildren;
WHEREAS, the Board of Education of (district) in (city), (state/commonwealth), believes that the Board can promote equality and community through avoidance of “government speech” which promotes or displays symbols, signs, and vestiges of racism, oppression, and intimidation in the (District), and urging the promotion of tolerance and unity by taking actions to ensure that “government speech” does not foster division, disharmony, or intolerance through government-issued or sponsored flags, signs, images, or other symbols ---
(1) direct the removal of the Confederate battle flag from school buildings under control of the Board; because messages displayed in these forums are a form of government speech; and
(2) urges other communities and school boards in the State hanging the Confederate battle flag in public places, including schools, to remove the flag.
Exception. This resolution shall not apply in instances where the Confederate battle flag is used for instructional purposes in schools or where the flag is on display for historical purposes in a public museum associated with a school under the control of the Board.