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Missourians Protest Removal of Pride Flags From School

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Over a dozen protesters gathered outside Kickapoo High School in Springfield, Mo., Monday after the school’s principal instructed what he called a “handful” of teachers to remove Pride flags from their classrooms.In an email obtained by the Springfield News-Leader, Principal Bill Powers informed a small group of teachers to remove Pride flags displayed in their classrooms, saying the flags violated Springfield Public Schools policy.

The move drew an angry response from the community, who gathered outside the high school on the first day of classes for the school year.“Issues in Springfield Public Schools are really close to my heart,” local drag artist Brett Baxley, a graduate of the district and organizer of the protest, told the News-Leader. “As an existing queer person in SPS, I know how difficult it can be in this area.”Baxley, who performs under the stage name Jimmy Anti, credited allied teachers with helping him survive his “high school experience.”The News-Leader later reported the Springfield Public Schools sent a follow-up email to district employees last Thursday, outlining the types of speech and activities that are limited or forbidden at school.

The email promised to hold accountable those employees who do not follow district policy. The district also issued a public display of support for Powers and his actions.“In this circumstance, Dr.

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