School officials at West Monroe High School have banned the use of the Confederate flag by its student body.
According to students, Principal Shelby Ainsworth announced that the flag could not be displayed or flown from vehicles on campus. The practice has been a long-standing tradition during football season at the school, whose mascot is the Rebel.
Ainsworth says the new policy applies to regular school hours, including arriving or departing from school grounds. "Basically, the flag has no place on our campus," he said. On Friday, school officials confiscated flags from at least six vehicles that were parked at school. The flags were returned to students at the end of the day.
Ainsworth says the national discussion that has taken place since the shootings in Charleston, South Carolina led to the new guideline.
A social media page created earlier this summer called for the removal of the mascot. School officials say they hope the new policy will put to rest the any debate over displays of the flag on school grounds.