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Durham Public Schools passes new dress code that bans Confederate flag apparel

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The Durham Public Schools made significant changes Thursday evening.

Durham Public Schools has unanimously passed a new dress code that bans Confederate flag apparel.

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The ban also includes other controversial symbols, such as swastikas.

The decision comes nearly two weeks after that violent white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Durham students were already prohibited from wearing clothing, jewelry, or book bags that could reasonably create a disruption at school.

The policy change, which is identical to the ban adopted by Orange County Schools, specifically bans the Confederate battle flag and other symbols deemed controversial.

"I think that this policy is a message to our students and to our community and to our families how important their safety is," said Bert L'Homme, Durham Public Schools superintendent. "And just not physical safety but psychological safety and emotional safety."

The school also decided to remove Julian Carr's name immediately from a building at Durham School for the Arts.

Carr, outspoke white supremacist, was an industrialist who was prominently involved in the Methodist Church, the Democratic Party, and several Confederate veterans' organizations. Carr was a Confederate war veteran.

The town of Carrboro is named after him, and he was an ardent supporter of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and was also instrumental in bringing Duke University to Durham from its origins as Trinity College in Randolph County.

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