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November 10, 2010 / J. Shaw

School Board refuses to order students to recite entire Pledge of Allegiance

A controversy over the Pledge of Allegiance at an elementary school has divided a small New York town and resulted in the resignation of a school board member.

Rosemarie Troidl told Fox News Radio she resigned as a member of the North Collins School Board after her fellow board members refused to order students to recite the entire Pledge of Allegiance together — not just the opening line.

“We were raised to respect the flag,” Troidl said, suggesting it was an issue of patriotism. “There’s no excuse for the board to have allowed this.”

She said around 250 people have signed a petition asking the school board to change the policy and direct children at North Collins Elementary School to recite the Pledge in unison. Residents angered by the policy plan to speak at a school board meeting planned Tuesday night at the North Collins High School library.

“The principal doesn’t think the children get the full benefit of saying the Pledge as a group because children say it at different speed,” she said. “We grew up learning it as a group.”

The morning starts with the entire student body reciting a “character pledge” in unison. Then, someone recites the opening line of the Pledge before the intercom is turned off.

Click here to read the school’s character pledge.

“If the school can say in unison a character pledge, why can they not recite as a group the Pledge of Allegiance to our flag?”

“We feel how we do it is really individualized and teaches what the Pledge stands for and what the flag stands for,” he said. “The teacher and the classmates say it in their individual classrooms where the teacher can monitor and teach what it means rather than making a robotic statement that’s made over the PA system.”


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