A Wisconsin school board is getting backlash after it voted to ban gay pride flags and Black Lives Matter (BLM) flags from classrooms.
The vote last Tuesday in the Kettle Moraine school district also prohibits teachers from displaying preferred pronouns in their email signatures.
“Teachers and administration will not have political flags or religious messaging in their classroom or on their person,” Superintendent Stephen Plum said, according to Fox 6.
The policy also forbids “We Back the Badge” signs from being displayed in classrooms.
Fox News reported that only one school board member voted against the measure, citing concerns from parents and students to defend the decision.
In addition to gaining national attention, the policy received pushback from students and progressive, activist groups.
“The fact is, the majority of students don’t want or need this, so catering to the minority only encourages the envelope to be pushed further,” one student said in the crowded room before school board members cast their votes.
Another student told the board, “I am not controversial. I am not political. I am a person,” per Fox 6.
Further, two high school students in the district started a petition on Change.org contesting the decision that has garnered over 13,000 signatures.
The ACLU of Wisconsin has spoken out against the school board and is investigating the policy.
“If you have a policy that says ‘nothing political,’ does that mean you can’t have a sign up that says, ‘Support our Troops’ or ‘Believe Women’ or ‘Save the Planet?’ By some people’s definitions, all of those things are political,” Christine Donahoe, an attorney with the American Civil Liberties Union of Wisconsin, said.
She continued to accuse the policy of targeting specific groups and viewpoints.
“It really looks like targeted attacks at specific viewpoints, like LGBT communities, or welcome and safe spaces to students of color,” she added.
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