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Grand Island Schools Lift Suspension After NRA T Shirt Controversy

(WBEN) In a move being praised by pro-gun activists The Grand Island School district has had a change of heart and is retracting the suspension it gave a student earlier this year after he wore a shirt with crossed rifles and the NRA logo.

According to one of the protestors, Superintendent Teresa Lawrence also read a statement during last night's board session that says they will no longer have students with objectionable t- shirts turn them inside out to comply with the districts dress code.

School officials couldn't be reached but activist Rus Thompson of Grand Island -- who earlier led parent protests against the district over the issue (pictured R) -- claimed "Victory" in  an update on his Facebook page posted after last night's board of education meeting.


The move comes after Shane Kinney was suspended last month for having two crossed rifles on his shirt as part of an NRA logo he was wearing.

HEAR KINNEY with WBEN's Tom Bauerle

Kinney was ordered to report to the principal's office after he says a teacher spotted him wearing a "Protected by Smith and Wesson" sweatshirt inside the school.

"They've yelled at me for wearing it before because it has a gun on it and I had to duct tape it," says Kinney. Administrators suggested he turn the shirt inside out or find another shirt. He refused, saying there was nothing wrong with it, adding the NRA has done great things for the country.

Early in the Controversy, The District Issued the Following Statement
The Grand Island School District recognizes this matter as an opportunity
to review its policies, procedures and actions to ensure that they are
consistent with our commitment to provide a safe learning environment and
protect students' Constitutional rights.

I reiterate, no student was disciplined for wearing a shirt expressing a
position on the NRA or gun control.

Teresa Lawrence, Ph.D.
Superintendent of Schools
Grand Island Central School District


Filed Under :  
Topics : Education
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Locations : The Grand Island School
People : Rus ThompsonShane KinneyTeresa LawrenceTom Bauerle
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