LEE’S SUMMIT, MO (KCTV) -- Things we put on social media don’t always stay private and the Lee’s Summit R-7 superintendent is responding after a photo of him at a tailgate was made public.

The photo Mike Smith shared on his Facebook page shows a man in the middle, who is Dr. Dennis Carpenter, giving the camera a middle finger while tailgating last fall.

Smith is concerned about the message the picture sends to students.

“That is profanity,” Smith said. “What he’s doing is profanity.”

The photo was taken at the Nov. 24 Georgia Southern vs. Georgia State football game in Atlanta.

In a statement, Dr. Carpenter said, “It’s unfortunate that this photograph has surfaced. As such, I’m committed to discussing the image with the Board of Education and moving forward.”

Carpenter is currently undergoing contract negotiations with the district.

“One-hundred percent, it is between him and the board,” Smith said.

The Board of Education said it is looking in to the photo. In a public statement, it said, “The ubiquity of social media and the inability to control what people post on social media can have ramifications beyond our control and is a problem we are all wrestling with in both the public and private sector.”

Smith’s post drew more than 1,000 comments in a day.

Some in support the superintendent.

The Missouri NEA told KCTV5 News they did not have a comment on the issue.

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