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Court balances freedom to wear flags, school safety

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SAN FRANCISCO — A federal appeals court wrestled with a case Thursday that pits the right of students to wear American flag T-shirts against the need for school administrators to ensure campus safety.

A three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, meeting here for arguments, appeared inclined to accept that school officials had reason to be concerned when several boys showed up in U.S. flag shirts during Cinco de Mayo in 2010 at a Northern California high school where there had been racial tensions.

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