Thursday, January 10 2013 10:07 AM EST2013-01-10 15:07:14 GMT
The attorney for a Midlands high school teacher accused of stomping on an American flag in front of his honors English classes says his client meant no disrespect.Darryl D. Smalls says 12-year teacherMore >
The attorney for a Midlands high school teacher accused of stomping on an American flag in front of his honors English classes says his client meant no disrespect.More >
Lexington-Richland School District Five made no decision Monday night on whether or not to terminate a teacher in the district who ignited a nationwide controversy after he allegedly threw down an American flag and stomped on it in front of his classes as part of a lesson.
District spokesperson Mark Bounds said the district's investigation into the matter is over. Superintendent Dr. Stephen Hafter has made the recommendation to the school board to fire Chapin High School teacher Scott Compton.
According to the South Carolina Teacher and Employment Dismissal Act, Compton has 15 days to respond to the request for termination. If he appeals, he has the right to a hearing before the board to prove his case.
The board discussed the matter behind closed doors at its packed meeting Monday night at Chapin High School. There was plenty of talk about the subject during the public comment portion of the meeting.
A retired Vietnam veteran, Tom Fincher with Chapin's American Legion Post, told the crowd he would like for the board to consider allowing a flag disposal ceremony to take place at the school's campus. He said that's the only way to bring closure to the issue.
"We're for anything that enhances respect for the American flag," said Fincher. "That flag we served under, died under. It is more than a piece of cloth."
Parents, on the other hand, said the closure they want to see is Compton removed from the classroom
"Based on this person's actions, this teacher is not a role model for my children," said one parent. "And is the epitome of who I don't want my children to grow up to be."
The district placed Compton on administrative leave after parents characterized his lessons as disrespectful and unpatriotic.
When Michael Copeland overheard his teenager talking about what her honors II English teacher did with the flag in their classroom, he pressed for details.
"He drew a couple of symbols, like one of them was a cross, and he said, 'What does this represent,' and everybody said, 'Christianity,'" said Copeland.
"Then he proceeds to take down the American flag, and said, 'This is a symbol, but it's only a piece of cloth. It doesn't mean anything,' and then he throws it down on the floor and then stomps on it, repeatedly."
"I asked what was he trying to get, the point across? And she said, 'I don't know,' and he said, his explanation was there would be no consequences, it's just a piece of cloth that doesn't mean anything."
But there are consequences.
"Our superintendent served in the military, I served in the military for 20 years, our flag is a symbol of our freedom, and so many people have fought and died for that liberty, and so we take this action very seriously," said Mark Bounds, a spokesperson for Lexington-Richland 5.
Compton repeated the lesson in three classes that day, prompting a full investigation. After an unrelated incident at Dutch Fork where a teacher was suspended for a political sign in her room, officials say teachers know better.
"There is a code of ethics for teachers that talks about professional conduct, and then we tell our teachers that their personal opinion is their personal opinion and shouldn't be brought into the classroom, and so we caution them all the time," said Bounds.
Copeland believes telling students the 50 stars symbolize the 50 states, the red and white stripes, symbolize the original 13 colonies might have been a better way.
"He totally ignored what I consider what would have been an excellent teaching point to just simply throw the flag down and show no respect to it at all and to the people that it means a whole lot to," said Copeland.
Monday, June 17 2013 10:25 AM EDT2013-06-17 14:25:49 GMT
Oregon State Police say troopers cited nine drivers traveling together on Highway 42 toward the coast after other motorists complained that they were driving carelessly. According to a police statement,More >
According to a police statement, the drivers in "souped-up" cars were making unsafe passes, racing, and running cars off the road while trying to keep up with one another.More >
Monday, June 17 2013 10:15 AM EDT2013-06-17 14:15:08 GMT
An Oregon man is being held in jail after his wife and two neighbors were found dead in two charred Myrtle Point homes over the weekend. Police arrested 65-year-old Edward Nelson on charges of aggravatedMore >
Police arrested 65-year-old Edward Nelson on charges of aggravated murder and first-degree arson.More >
Monday, June 17 2013 9:57 AM EDT2013-06-17 13:57:30 GMT
(CNN) - According to a new CNN/ORC poll, just 45 percent of Americans believe the President is doing a good job. President Obama can't seem to get out from under his dark cloud- fueling the fall in hisMore >
The drop in President Barack Obama's popularity comes on the heels of a leak that revealed the NSA has been conducting a large data-mining operation on American citizens.More >
Monday, June 17 2013 2:06 PM EDT2013-06-17 18:06:29 GMT
A girl who is believed to be autistic was found walking naked along the shoulder of Interstate 5 on Sunday north of Ashland. Oregon State Police say she appeared to be in her late teens and couldn'tMore >
A girl who is believed to be autistic was found walking naked along the shoulder of Interstate 5 on Sunday north of Ashland.More >
Monday, June 17 2013 9:21 AM EDT2013-06-17 13:21:17 GMT
Four people ended up in the hospital after a serious car crash near Redland in Clackamas County. The most seriously injured, a five-year-old boy, was taken by Lifeflight helicopter. Clackamas County sheriff'sMore >
A LifeFlight helicopter rushed a 5-year-old boy to a hospital after a crash near Redland, and a 72-year-old man has been arrested in the crash. More >
Monday, June 17 2013 10:08 AM EDT2013-06-17 14:08:47 GMT
Interstate 84 west bound lanes near the Cascade Locks were closed Sunday after a travel trailer overturned. The crash happened around 3:30 Sunday afternoon. Oregon State Police say a woman driving a suburbanMore >
Monday, June 17 2013 3:59 PM EDT2013-06-17 19:59:32 GMT
Police in Portland are investigating a Sunday afternoon shooting. Officers were called to the corner of 158th Avenue and East Burnside just after neighbors reported hearing gunshots. When investigatorsMore >
Shots were fired on East Burnside Street Sunday afternoon, but police said no witnesses have come forward and no arrests have been made in the case.More >
Monday, June 17 2013 12:41 AM EDT2013-06-17 04:41:06 GMT
Police want to find the driver who hit a bicyclist in North Portland.It happened at North Greeley and Interstate Avenue around 11:30 Saturday night.Officers did not have a lot of information to releaseMore >
The wife of a bicyclist who was nearly killed by a hit-and-run driver in North Portland wants the driver responsible to turn themselves in.More >
Sunday, June 16 2013 10:37 PM EDT2013-06-17 02:37:25 GMT
Police are asking the public for help to find a 13-year-old boy who may have run away from home. Jonathan Marshall King, who goes by Marshall, was last seen walking to school Tuesday morning. When hisMore >
Jonathan Marshall King, who goes by Marshall, was last seen walking to school Tuesday morning.More >
Friday, June 14 2013 8:25 PM EDT2013-06-15 00:25:41 GMT
An official autopsy report has been released in the death of Reid Fliehr who was found dead in a SouthPark hotel room earlier this year. The autopsy from the Mecklenburg County Medical Examiner's OfficerMore >
An official autopsy report has been released in the death of Reid Fliehr who was found dead in a SouthPark hotel room earlier this year.More >