In 2009, the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit heard for the first time a case challenging the constitutionality of a public school's ban on the display of Confederate flags. When the Eighth Circuit faced this situation in B. WA. v. Farmington R- 7 School District (B. WA. v. Farmington), it attempted to balance the competing interests of protecting students' free speech rights and avoiding future disruption and danger to the learning environment. In doing so, the court adhered to the reasoning established by its sister circuits and set a precedent within the Eighth Circuit that shifts away from Tinker's original protections to allow suppression of a particular mode of student political speech, even when that exact mode of expression has never caused a disruption.

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