The debate over the Confederate flag in Orange County Schools will continue, as the school board referred a proposed change to the dress code back to the policy committee.
Board member Donna Coffey, who made the motion, said she thought the draft as written was insufficient.
“We’ve heard from many that there’s a need for protection for all,” she said. “In my opinion, while the proposed policy protects some, it shortchanges others.”
Coffey said the policy does not specifically protect LGBTQIA or handicap communities.
The proposed policy says would ban students from wearing anything that is “indecent, profane, or racially intimidating.”
The change would, in effect, ban students from displaying the Confederate flag and has been debated for months. In a meeting in June the policy was passed by the board, but it needed a second vote to take effect.
Board member Brenda Stephens said she wanted to pass the policy and continue to work on it.
“Of course I’m in favor of what’s in front of us, obviously,” she said. “What’s to prohibit us from passing this tonight and working on it in the future?”
The board had the authority to do what Stephens asked, but voted 4-3 in favor of Coffey’s motion.
By board rules, Coffey has the right to compel the board to face the issue again in 60 days, regardless of whether the committee has reported back.
“I’m searching for a policy that promotes positive schools, cultural competency and one that is inclusive, fair and enforceable,” she said. “I think we can do better than this draft policy in front of us.”