The University of Mississippi has removed the state flag from campus, according to a university statement issued Monday. The move comes after student senators voted 33-15 with one abstention last week to ask the school administration to furl the banner, which includes the Confederate battle emblem in its upper left corner. “University of Mississippi Police Department officers lowered and furled the state flag in a Lyceum Circle ceremony as the campus opened Monday morning,” a school statement said. “The flag will be preserved in the University Archives along with resolutions from students, faculty and staff calling for its removal.

Like many students and observers, Buka Okoye, president of the school’s NAACP chapter, had the impression that the school wouldn’t act on the student senators’ vote until a new chancellor was appointed. The NAACP was in the process of organizing a march in two weeks to pressure the university administration to take down the flag immediately. He was “shocked” to learn the school had removed the banner Monday, he said. “It was huge that the university came on the right side,” he said. “That was huge for me. It really shows me how much the university has progressed.” FULL REPORT