Appleton North students punished for burning Kimberly school flag

Video on social media shows Appleton North High School students burning a rival's flag before Friday's football game

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APPLETON, Wis. (WBAY) – Some Appleton North High School students were punished at school Monday for burning a Kimberly High School flag ahead of Friday night’s rival football game.

A video was recorded and shared on social media hundreds of times before it was removed.

School officials agree the students’ flag burning was disrespectful and not within the acceptable boundaries of school spirit and sportsmanship.

The flag burning took place in Appleton.

Appleton North Principal James Huggins tells Action 2 News none of the students were athletes or associated with the football team, but he says he’s disappointed and embarrassed by their lack of sportsmanship.

“There are consequences for their actions— certainly inappropriate actions— and that’s being dealt with,” Huggins told Action 2 News Monday morning.

He wouldn’t say exactly what punishment the students face.

Huggins did say he kicked off what should have been an exciting homecoming pep rally for the whole school with a lecture about how students need to conduct themselves.

“It was a very good opportunity to reinforce and share what we believe, what we expect and what we truly receive from our students. That was done school-wide this morning. It was timely in that I could reinforce our expectations and what we stand for, and share our disappointment in what had happened and that we never want to have that happen again,” the principal said.

“With a lot of spirit days and a homecoming dance, and another game here at home this week, it’s really important that we reinforce our message and make sure our students understand,” he added.

Kimberly Athletic Director Ryan McGinnis says he saw the video right after his team won the game. He was notified by the Appleton North High School athletic director through a text message, and that “he was apologetic” for the video.

“Some students made a poor decision and I’m sure they’ll be held accountable, and that’s a part of growing up,” McGinnis said.

Kimberly school officials say Appleton North High School officials and athletic departments aren’t to blame for the actions of a handful of students.

“You do try to have a culture of positivity and one of respect for whomever your opponent is, and that’s what we try to do, and I know what’s what they try to do over there,” McGinnis said.

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