High school cheerleaders ‘on probation’ after posing with Trump banner, NC district says

Cheerleaders at a North Carolina high school were put on probation after a picture of them with a pro-Trump banner during a football game circulated on social media — and some people aren’t happy about it.

The North Carolina High School Athletic Association placed the cheerleading squad at North Stanly High School on probation for the remainder of the season, Stanly County Schools announced Monday.

But the NCHSAA “has not defined the terms of the probation,” and the team is expected to continue cheering, the school district said in a release.

“The focus of Friday night football games should be on our students – the players, cheerleaders, band members – the focus should not be on politics,” officials said. “For this reason, we are hopeful the situation will resolve, and our student athletes can have a successful fall season.”

NCHSAA Commissioner Que Tucker told McClatchy news group in a statement Monday that probation — which can last up to one year — is not a form of punishment.

“It serves as a notice of behavior or action that is against NCHSAA Handbook Policy or contrary to expectations of sportsmanship and proper behavior,” she said.

The NCHSAA can issue subsequent fines or suspensions if those actions continue, Tucker said.

In a photo posted on Facebook Aug. 30, at least seven North Stanly cheerleaders in uniform are seen posing around a banner reading “Trump 2020: Make America Great Again.” The students appear to be on a high school football field with referees in the background.

North Stanly High School is roughly 40 miles east of Charlotte.

Commenters questioned at the time whether such political messages were allowed during a school-sanctioned event.

“Why in the world would the school board allow this to happen,” one person wrote. “I am sad and very disappointed with NS. This is a High School football game, not a political rally. Shame on them.”

The following day, district officials issued a statement confirming the act was not endorsed by the school or its staff.

A student reportedly brought the banner and the photo was taken before the game started, officials said.

Stanly County Board of Education policy bars political advertisements on campus or at school events, according to the statement on Aug. 31 . The district also said it does not make political endorsements.

“This policy does not prohibit students from speaking their minds or engaging in protected First Amendment activities,” district officials said in the release Monday. “Because the cheerleaders were in uniform and were acting as representatives of the school, the display of the sign could be perceived as the school or school system endorsing a political campaign.”

The cheerleaders were not punished by the school or district, but officials have asked them not to display the sign again, the district said.

Residents have taken to social media to share their concerns over the the NCHSAA decision.

Some community members created an event on Facebook scheduled for Friday night to support the cheerleading squad, which they say was wrongly punished.

“Please come out and help me show the school and the NCHSAA that freedom of speech is not dead,” the event description states. “Please bring all your Trump and MAGA gear and lets throw our support behind the North Stanly High School cheerleaders.”

More than 90 people had RSVP’d by Monday afternoon while another 749 people had marked themselves “interested.”

“Ridiculous!!! Whether or not you like the president should not play a factor,” one person wrote on the event page. “We live in a country with freedom of speech!! Let those girls cheer!!!!”

— Hayley Fowler
The Charlotte Observer

———

©2019 The Charlotte Observer (Charlotte, N.C.), Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

The post High school cheerleaders ‘on probation’ after posing with Trump banner, NC district says appeared first on Personal Liberty®.

Visit the USSA News store!
Click this link for the original source of this article.
Author: Bob Livingston



This content is courtesy of, and owned and copyrighted by, http://personalliberty.com and its author. This content is made available by use of the public RSS feed offered by the host site and is used for educational purposes only. If you are the author or represent the host site and would like this content removed now and in the future, please contact the USSANews.com administrator by using the contact form located in the top-left menu. Your request will be immediately honored. Please visit http://personalliberty.com for more terrific, conservative content. The owner of this website may be paid to recommend American Bullion. The content of this website, including the positive review of American Bullion, the negative review of its competitors, and any other information may not be independent or neutral.

USSANews.com