A group of students from an Iowa high school were disciplined Wednesday after a photo of them wearing white hoods, waving a Confederate flag and burning a cross began circulating on social media, according to The Associated Press.
One student is also seen holding what appears to be a rifle.
The photo first appeared on Snapchat and made the rounds from there, according to WHOtv.com. The students in the image attend Creston Community High School and are members of the Creston/Orient-Macksburg football team. CCHS Assistant Principal Jeff Bevins told the Creston News Advertiser that they got ahold of the picture on Wednesday morning and immediately investigated what transpired.
“It is a student discipline issue, so no comment as far as what has been done with the students,” Bevins said. “We have taken action already.”
Principal Bill Messerole told the publication via email that “the picture does not represent CCHS, our school system or our community.”
“We are proud of how our students and staff conducted themselves today after the picture became public. It is of the utmost importance that our students feel safe and welcomed in our district,” he wrote.
Messerole also told the AP that the photograph was not taken on school property and that the “investigation is ongoing.” The Creston Police Department said that it was aware of the photo but would not investigate, according to The Root.
A member of the Creston football team sent a statement defending his community and stressing the values of his team to WHOtv. The anonymous note said that “the five individuals that were involved with the picture are clearly in the wrong and they will face the consequences eventuall[y].”
“But I can promise everyone that as a whole our football team and community aren’t about that. The actions made by a small group shouldn’t represent the entire football team and community. I’m proud to be a part of what this team is actually about and it’s sad to see something like this ruin a rich tradition we carry,” the statement reads.
The surfacing of the photograph comes just days after students at a central Indiana high school were banned from wearing the Confederate flag after it caused altercations in the school’s hallways.
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