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White Plains school official, local fans react to NFL controversy

Superintendent Joseph Ricca says this controversy is a very teachable moment for coaches and students

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After seeing the images of NFL players kneeling during the national anthem and teams locking arms in response to President Donald Trump’s divisive comments on Friday night, the president sounded off again, this time saying team owners should fire any player who kneels.

Given the possibility that students may invoke their right to free speech to kneel during a football game, White Plains City School District Superintendent Joseph Ricca hopes that adult fans remember that they’re kids, and behave accordingly.

"I think that across the United States we are going to see some students participating in that show of solidarity for one reason or another," says Ricca.

Ricca says his high school students haven't demonstrated for social justice on the field but off the field.

However, he adds that no disciplinary action would be taken against a student who kneels.

"The Supreme Court has long ruled that you do not shed your constitutional rights at the schoolhouse door. We recognize that in White Plains," says Ricca.

Ricca and the school's athletic director say this trend is a very teachable moment and coaches are prepared to talk with students about it.

"Just informing them that it's their constitutional right to do these types of things, and there are two sides," says White Plains City School District Athletic Director Matt Cameron.

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