Charles County Public Schools is investigating how a Confederate flag was hung from the flagpole of one of the Maryland county’s high schools.
On Thursday, cadets from La Plata High School’s JROTC found it on the school’s main flagpole. School staff removed the flag after it was reported.
Principal Douglass Dolan said in a letter to the school community that school administrators have learned that students are sharing images on social media after the flag was hung.
“We are investigating the incident, including reviewing school camera footage and talking with students who may have information about the incident,” Dolan said.
The school resource officer is helping with the investigation, he said. Charles County schools said in a statement that it is working with the Charles County Sheriff’s Office to investigate.
In a statement, Schools Superintendent Maria Navarro called what happened “disturbing,” adding that it’s a teachable moment for “children and ourselves that we as a school system and as a community will not tolerate symbols of hate, and we won’t allow hate to gain a foothold in our school system.”
Dolan said it’s especially disturbing following the shooting in Buffalo, New York, that killed 10 Black people last weekend. He said that students found to be involved in the raising of the flag will face school disciplinary actions, as well as possible charges by police.
“At La Plata High School, we support all students and a diverse community. What we do not support is the unauthorized access of school property and the hanging of a confederate flag from the school flagpole. That symbol of hate does not reflect who we are as a La Plata High School Community,” Dolan said.
Police believe the flag was hung late Wednesday night. Anyone with information on what happened should contact the Charles County schools’ director of school safety and security Jason Stoddard at firstname.lastname@example.org; or call the sheriff’s office at 301-932-2222.