First Valley High Forum on Race Relations Held

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WEST DES MOINES, Iowa — About a hundred people packed the cafeteria at Valley High School Thursday night for a forum on race relations.

It was in that cafeteria that a large fight broke out last month. We are told it started because of a picture that one student posted on social media.

“The student had joined Valley High School from the state of Missouri about a year and a half ago and in her room on the back wall she had two flags. She had an American United States flag and she had a confederate United States flag,” said Valley principal Tim Miller.

The posting shows the student in front of a confederate flag wishing people a happy Sunday. We are not revealing the student’s identity.

The picture led to a fight involving eight students, with dozens more looking on and recording it with their phones.

Some took offense to the picture and others were defending the student.

Miller said it also led to some tension in the school.

Thursday night parents, teachers, and a panel of local leaders met to discuss racism in Valley High School and around the country

“I just think listening and being patient with people and trying to understand everybody else`s point of view. I mean everybody`s dealing with something but the thing is to have an open mind and an open heart and take yourself out of the equation sometimes and listen to what other people have to say,” says mother Heidi Samples.

The school is planning two more similar forums, one at the end of April and one at the end of May.

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