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Oops! Local Elementary School Raises Inverted American Flag

BROOKSVILLE – Was it intentional or just a mistake? That’s what some concerned Veterans and passersby want to know, after the American Flag was flown inverted at Moton Elementary this morning.

One concerned U.S. Military Veteran contacted RNRF today, after he noticed the flag flying inverted. Out of concerns for his employment, he wished to remain anonymous.

Moton Elementary Interim Principal Brent Gaustad declined to take our calls and we have yet to receive a response from the District on what may have led to incorrect display.

Some parents say students are allowed to raise and lower the flag each day without adult supervision, which is why they say it was most likely just a mistake.

It’s unknown at this time how long the flag was flown inverted or when it was corrected.

According to 4 U.S.C. § 8, (a) The flag should never be displayed with the union down, except as a signal of dire distress in instances of extreme danger to life or property.

There is no indication that the inversion was nothing more than an innocent mistake but without an official comment from school administrators or the district, it leaves some wondering if there is more to the story.

This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. ™2013 – 2018 RNRF Incorporated.


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  • Why don’t all you people ragging at RNRF spend your time ragging at the school or school board for their lack of interest and the lack of respect they show to our veterans and this country.
    Now that it was mentioned if I remember correctly weren’t we ( the people paying the 1/2 penny tax) supposed to get an update on where and how this money is being spent. ???

    Friday, 9 February 2018, 11:57 am
    • I bet you’re mesmerized by shiny objects and chew with your mouth open.

      Friday, 9 February 2018, 8:38 pm
      • Why exactly would you say that? Because he/she is concerned about where their tax funds are being spent or because the school district disrespects this country and its veterans. Either way it shows your profound ineptitude to grasp a justified concern, your doltishness and it spotlights your evil self-righteous attitude.

        Saturday, 10 February 2018, 1:02 am
  • Children at school bus stops. Schoolyard sidewalk graffiti. Elementary school flagpoles… It seems like a strange fascination with elementary school children. I think it’s more concerning that a grown man is lurking around public schools taking pictures.

    Friday, 9 February 2018, 9:21 am
    • Especially when dropping off a kid who goes to the school. Oh no I forgot your not allowed to be a concerned citizen with out someone throwing shots at a retired vet. Real cleassy

      Saturday, 10 February 2018, 1:34 pm
  • First, THANK YOU to all veterans and their families for their service to this country and its citizens. Their would be no country or our rights without you!!! 2.) This story is important because our flag is important and should be respected! The JOB of the school system is to TEACH (NOT RAISE) our children and what are they teaching if they do not correct a mistake as soon as possible. It teaches our children that either the flag is not important or it is not important to fix your mistakes. Either lesson is horrible. 3.) I did work in the schools as a teacher, and have 4 other family members who still work in the schools as teachers and administrators. Yes teachers are busy BUT that is no excuse. If teachers worked year round like the rest of the country and used all the technology available to them instead of complaining about learning something new, then they would have more of extra time. Also, incompetent or lazy teachers should be fired(like they would be in the corporate business environment)! 4.) This school district is rife with unscrupulous and illegal practices. Principals and staff lie directly to your face even with proof of those lies. Administrators purchase over priced inferior technology because of shady deals. (Not an excuse for teachers to not use superior technology because they could purchase it out of pocket like those in the corporate business environment). They raise a half cent sales tax after it was voted down (then had to have a vote on a separate day that was not widely known) for use on things like re-paving a parking lot that was unnecessary and budgets spent horribly because it’s not their money but government money(tax payer funds). Liberals have also infused the curriculum and textbooks with their liberal beliefs and skewed and distorted facts to support their liberal beliefs, lying to our children. Lastly, sorry this was long but what the school district and staff forget is that they work for us, the citizens. We pay their salaries and budgets. They have a duty to answer our questions and concerns. They complain about a lack of parental involvement BUT then when parents try to get involved they are disrespected and lied to and told to leave. They truly do not want parents to bother(Their attitude) them at all! They do not put children’s needs first! Please note, their are exceptions and to those FEW my greatest thanks go to you! You deserve a raise! Therefore, Tom please don’t stop exposing the lies and corruption, those citizens who think for themselves appreciate your hard work and respect your job as a true reporter to report the real news and not fake news as most “reporters.” It is only a “conspiracy theory” if you have no facts, if you have facts, then it is no longer a theory but the TRUTH!

    Thursday, 8 February 2018, 10:52 pm
  • Public schools!
    They’re funded by public tax dollars, so they behave like a Socialst Communist institutions, the children are learning to hate America, it’s freedoms, and Christ, so they raise an upside down flag!
    Thank you for exposing this Tom Lemons!

    But this must be stopped, soon they’ll be sacrificing goats and chanting around a chalk-drawn pentagram on the asphalt by the flagpole!

    Thursday, 8 February 2018, 8:18 pm
  • Tom why is it you expect people to follow a proper protocol and go through the correct channels when it comes to questioning you, yet you demand answers “right now” when it comes to any government agency? You wonder why they don’t jump to answer you, maybe because you down them practically on a daily basis. And as far as news media having special privileges, you have yet to answer multiple people when asked what your credentials are? Please respond

    Thursday, 8 February 2018, 7:01 pm
      • Please respond^^

        Thursday, 8 February 2018, 8:02 pm
      • Neither does *your reply

        Friday, 9 February 2018, 8:33 am
  • Just another nothingburger Tom thinks makes the school look bad. #sad.

    Thursday, 8 February 2018, 4:27 pm
  • The elementary students put the flag up and down everyday and accidentally put the flag upside down nothing to make a news report of… as you can see some people have nothing better to do with their lives!

    Thursday, 8 February 2018, 4:22 pm
    • So when the school was called on it in the morning and then left like that all day that’s the issue and as far as having no life some of mine was given to protect the flag you live under and the flag of the country that has given everyone the freedoms we have. So I do take it to heart that the schools are not teaching these children the proper way to do this. Sorry you feel the way you do and this was not started to cause a debate. But to have the schools watch the kids doing it and possibly educate them as well.

      Thursday, 8 February 2018, 6:08 pm
  • As a veteran and someone that does take the time to volunteer at Moton, I can tell you that “hit pieces” such as this are not useful. How about the person that took the picture get out of their car, go up to the school, and offer to fix the flag? This is what would have been done in a time before social media, but unfortunately these days taking a few moments to do that would be inconvenient. Bottom line is that this is not a thing newsworthy about this, said that this is used as click bait.

    Thursday, 8 February 2018, 12:45 pm
    • So when they offered and we’re told no then what and it stayed like that all day ? They also offered to go in and teach the kids. Due to this and you are already at the school it might work better for you

      Thursday, 8 February 2018, 6:14 pm
  • This is the type of stuff that makes you loose your advertisers.

    Thursday, 8 February 2018, 8:05 am
      • and deleting comments…

        Thursday, 8 February 2018, 1:56 pm
    • Tom you took a poorly vetted source and published a photo he took from someone else and passed it off as his own. You don’t get responses because you editorialize all of your so called “news articles” You are borderline libelous and call yourself a defender of the first amendment. Get real, you are no better than the company you keep. You cant handle honest dialogue so you whitewash your site of any real opposing views. You say the Sheriff dodges your questions and so does the school board. How about you Tom…Stand by for Tom to delete my comment in 3….2….1….

      Thursday, 8 February 2018, 12:26 pm
      • First of all if you read the article at no point in time does it ever that it was mine so I don’t know where you got that from second of all I’m not going to defend anybody this is brought to the attention because the school system decided to ignore it for the whole day. The guy who did take the picture apparently lost his sack because he is now back-tracking out of it. I may not agree with a lot of things Tom does but at least he has the balls to do something about things and not just sit by and let it go on.

        Thursday, 8 February 2018, 6:18 pm
  • Just so everyone knows the school was called the morning this was done and the person who did call spoke to an adult and it was left like that all day. That was the concern that after someone called the information that was given was ignored. This has nothing to do with the conspiracy theory or any other kind of crap people want to say. It was most likely just an accident but after the fact of the phone call that no one took the time to go fix the flag is the concern.

    Thursday, 8 February 2018, 7:07 am
  • My children go to that horrible school. Two little 5th grade girls put the flag up and take it down everyday with no adult supervision. Most days they just bunch up the flag and put it under their arms as they carry it in. As much as I hate that school and the administration I’m sure it was just lack of supervision which isn’t a shock coming from a school where a five year old got almost to 41 before passer Byers stopped him. Not the school staff. But the flag should be respected and our children should be taught the proper way to put the flag up and take it down.

    Thursday, 8 February 2018, 2:27 am
  • Tom, I know Westside has ALWAYS had safety patrols to raise and lower the flag everyday. I ALSO know from observing in the drop off/pick up line that there is NEVER an adult with them as these kids are 5th graders and should know how to do this by now. I’m pretty sure they were trained as they do an excellent job. The adults (staff) was otherwise preoccupied across the parking lot on the sidewalk helping students out of their vehicles…so they are busy at the drop off time, and the p/u times.
    I’m pretty certain that most elementary schools follow the same protocol, so I can honestly say that this was indeed a mistake on the part of the student who raised the flag. Since there is usually two of them doing it, they were probably talking as well which could have distracted them. There was no alterior motive behind it.
    As for the head principal not returning your calls…DON’T hold your breath! I’m pretty sure the HSCB had issued a directive via email to the administration of EACH SCHOOL ordering them to not respond to any requests for information for you from this point on. And THAT would NOT surprise me.

    Wednesday, 7 February 2018, 11:24 pm
  • This is total misrepresentation. I am the veteran who saw this and called the school. I NEVER called this local news organization. This is all bogus. It was a simple mistake. The photo was stolen from my Facebook post.

    Wednesday, 7 February 2018, 9:50 pm
      • I know who contacted you. He works for the county and called you. He never saw the flag in question. He is a Navy veteran and we used to work together. Stop your misinformation.

        Wednesday, 7 February 2018, 10:05 pm
          • *Tag for deletion

            Thursday, 8 February 2018, 2:05 pm
      • if he’s telling the truth, he just did contact by leaving a comment. why would he trust you after you stole this and twisted it? this article is sick.

        Wednesday, 7 February 2018, 10:19 pm
          • Why dont you just delete his comment?

            Thursday, 8 February 2018, 2:04 pm
    • Kind of funny after I spoke to you and there was no problem with me talking to Tom about this as a concerned veteran myself. The concern that I had and when I spoke to you about this was that you called in the morning and the flag was left like this all day. Even after your phone call the school decided to do nothing about the situation. I didn’t steal anything from you you posted it on a public forum and complained about it. And now you’re saying it’s bogus. If it is bogus then why did you post it. You didn’t seem to have a problem talking about the situation when I spoke to you yesterday and agreed that due to the fact that the school did nothing about it was the concern.

      Thursday, 8 February 2018, 6:29 am
    • Also at the time of our conversation I told you that Tom had not posed to be article yet and you had no problem with that at all and you also did not voice your opinion that you did not want it posted he did not mention you in any way shape or form this was just a concerned veteran letting the school system know that proper training needs to be done if need be there is no conspiracy theory again the concern was the school was contacted and nothing was done about it to fix the problem that day yes it probably was a mistake and accidental situation whatever you want to call it but when the school was called and nothing was done about it that’s the concern that I had as well as you. Tom is brought this to light and maybe the school will take a closer look and maybe have somebody out there to help these kids and teach them to do it properly that’s the point. again thank you Tom for bringing this to our attention.

      Thursday, 8 February 2018, 7:02 am
    • Note how Tom blames you after stealing your images then has the nerve to demand you explain yourself through the “proper contact” methods.

      Saturday, 10 February 2018, 12:21 pm
  • the child that raised the flag should have had an adult with them and made sure they done it right. First of all an adult should have done it in the first place.

    Wednesday, 7 February 2018, 9:47 pm
  • After reading the article, I figured there would be flag wavers criticizing the school administration. So what harm was done? Did the upside-down flag make someone angry or sad, or was it just another excuse to dump on county schools and our educators?

    Wednesday, 7 February 2018, 9:05 pm
    • Made in america, A veteran was concerned and called Tom, with the way some people burn it, walk on it and wrap themselves in it, That person has every right and fought for that right. No dumping here , oh right, you work in the school system. Can’t take the heat, get out of the kitchen.

      Wednesday, 7 February 2018, 10:15 pm
    • Another chance for him to dump on the schools, and try to create more turmoil in our county

      Thursday, 8 February 2018, 7:13 pm
    • The harm was that after the veteran called the school ignored the flag all day left it like that all day and did nothing about it.

      Saturday, 10 February 2018, 1:37 pm
  • My kids go there and I watch 2 CHILDREN put it up and down when I’m in line..STOP THE CONSPIRACY THEORY…. I’m sure it was a mistake
    Bigger things out there to report I’m thinking! Like why is my child on a 3rd teacher this year, they keep quitting!!!

    Wednesday, 7 February 2018, 8:52 pm
    • @Obviously it was a mistake, why don’t you ask the school and the school board your question? Perhaps they can answer your question, Or maybe it is a CONSPIRACY THEORY as to why they quit. Humm

      Wednesday, 7 February 2018, 10:10 pm
        • Tom, I am on your side,, I think I wrote it wrong , wasn’t meant for you, was replying to person above. Sorry for the misunderstanding and that you took offense, I support you. AND NEVER CUT DOWN YOUR REPORTING .Have a nice day. Keep up the good work

          Thursday, 8 February 2018, 8:18 am
          • I was responding to her question regarding why her 3rd grader who has had 3 different teachers this year, not the flag, she should ask the school and school board WHY the teachers are quitting . In re reading what I originally replied I left that part out, hope this clears up the vonsuision.

            Thursday, 8 February 2018, 8:24 am
        • Tom i wish you could find out why my child’s education is suffering because she is on her 3rd teacher, and in between teachers they were either stuffed in the other teachers class or they had I believe a 19 yd old replacement who obviously has not completed teacher school,it’s very frustrating, our kids are getting crap education!!!!

          Thursday, 8 February 2018, 1:54 pm
      • You don’t think it was a simple mistake?? After reading the later comments can’t believe that the school knew about it in the morning and did nothing..smh

        Thursday, 8 February 2018, 1:57 pm
  • I would first like to thank all of our Veterans that have served our country THANK YOU! I would also like to thank those men and women who are serving now.Thank you! Now I stand facing our countries flag and respectfully site the Pledge of Allegiance and always will. In my heart I want to believe that this was simply a mistake that the children meant no disrespect. I worked at one of the elementary schools and yes they have the children raise the flag. However at the school I was working for there was always an adult supervising from a far. Why the school is not responding to Tom is more of a mystery to me, like someone else mentioned what do they have to hide?

    Wednesday, 7 February 2018, 7:50 pm
  • I think we have more inportant things to worry about than a flag,REAlly how high it is,if its out there

    Wednesday, 7 February 2018, 7:12 pm
    • @David De-pot, THE FLAG IS MOST IMPORTANT TO THE AMERICANS THAT LOVE THIS COUNTRY. IT REPRESENTATIVE WHAT WE STANDING FOR, THE LIVES THAT HAVE BEEN LOST, THE ONES THAT ARE STILL SERVING, AND HAVE SERVED. , SO THAT YOU ( NEGATIVE NELLIE) CAN GET ON HERE TO POST YOUR OPINION!! ALL OF YOUR POSTS ARE USUALLY NASTY AND DEGRADING TO PEOPLE, NOW OUR FLAG. ?? IT is your right, but we don’t have to agree TROLL.!!!!🐓🐓🐥🐥

      Wednesday, 7 February 2018, 9:58 pm
  • I’m sure it was a mistake. As children are the one that typically easier and lowers the flag every morning and after school. I don’t know of any school that doesn’t have their children doing the flag. The school is probably embarrassed they didn’t notice it first. Completely innocent mistake. Everyone should know this. Esp if they have kids.

    Wednesday, 7 February 2018, 6:12 pm
  • I know at Westside elementary the 2kids hang and take down the flag every day. So it was probably a mistake ( I know it’s a different school but I’m sure the have the same procedure.).

    Wednesday, 7 February 2018, 6:02 pm
  • Why haven’t they reply to Tom . I am a Veteran . If it was a mistake they should reply what are the afraid of . I know let’s blame the kids. They just don’t have gutes to call you

    Wednesday, 7 February 2018, 6:01 pm
    • First of all, thank you for your service. But in regard to your comment: 1. All press inquiries likely need to be addressed to the school board office, not to the principal, as county policy probably dictates. 2. They have MUCH bigger issues to deal with. I am not saying this isn’t AN issue, but it is definitely not THE issue of the day, I can guarantee you. 3. It would be lovely of you to volunteer at the school and oversee the flag raising and lowering each day. Spend some time teaching the kids how to do it properly; I’m sure they’d be happy to have you and your help.

      Wednesday, 7 February 2018, 7:45 pm
      • It probably was an accident by the students. But when the school was called by the concerned person nothing was done and it was like that all day. You are 100 % right they do have other or bigger issue in the school. But they could have had someone go correct it. And the individual who called the school also offered to go and teach the importance of the raising of the flag.

        Thursday, 8 February 2018, 9:44 am
  • Our son wanted a flag pole and flag for Christmas, so his dad ( who is a vet) obliged A few days later a little boy around 6 or 7 was walking home with his mother, He said” I HATE THAT FLAG His mother said nothing. Just goes to show ya the direspect these kids have nowadays and obviously the stupid mom. Have no idea why this was done, accident maybe, however if school officials didn’t notice, what else are they not noticing. Tom you know by now they aren’t going to reply.They sit in there ivory towers and think they are something special Hope it is hanging right now.And for all of you who don’t love America and appreciate our veterans, feel free to leave, please.

    Wednesday, 7 February 2018, 5:52 pm
    • It probably was an accident but yes parents need to teach their kids respect. Doesn’t matter where you’re from you’re in America so respect our flag. And thank your husband for serving.

      Wednesday, 7 February 2018, 6:54 pm
    • Perhaps they didn’t notice because they were too busy handling all the things that go on in a school when you are helping RAISE CHILDREN. Have you been in a school lately? I guarantee you they were not sitting around.

      Wednesday, 7 February 2018, 7:48 pm
      • But don’t you think if they’re going to have children raise that flag they should teach them how to do it properly, teach him how to respect the flag for their country and supervise them on how to do it properly?

        Saturday, 10 February 2018, 1:41 pm
  • Yeah, probably a mistake. Whoever did it may want to check next time.

    Wednesday, 7 February 2018, 4:56 pm
  • How stupid can you get, the school administration will not take calls, go figure, a bunch of dumb asses

    Wednesday, 7 February 2018, 4:30 pm
    • Have you considered that they didn’t because they can’t? HCSB has a PR department for a reason. I’m certain you don’t know the principal yourself or you would not make such a baseless and ignorant comment.

      Wednesday, 7 February 2018, 7:50 pm
  • I can assure you it was nothing more than an innocent mistake. Not really newsworthy but glad to hear there’s nothing serious going on in the county today

    Wednesday, 7 February 2018, 4:28 pm
  • It was probably a mistake. Granted one that school officials should have noticed

    Wednesday, 7 February 2018, 4:08 pm
  • slow day for news huh

    Wednesday, 7 February 2018, 3:55 pm
      • true!!! I really got a kick out of the Jersey guy LOL you woke me up with a laugh thanks

        Wednesday, 7 February 2018, 4:18 pm

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