Leon County School Board to Address “Religious/Patriotic Ceremonies and Observances”

Leon County School Board to Address “Religious/Patriotic Ceremonies and Observances”

On Tuesday, the Leon County School Board is scheduled to consider changes to a number of policies due to recently enacted laws by the Florida Legislature. None of the proposed changes were initiated by LCS officials.

One of the policies being amended is related to Religious/Patriotic Ceremonies and Observances. The proposed changes are detailed below.

Moment of Silence

The current policy provides that a moment of silence may be provided at the discretion of the Superintendent, and prevents compelled participation by any student. 

The proposed change provides that the principal shall require teachers in first-period classrooms to have a moment of silence every day. The moment of silence must last at least one minute, but not more than two minutes.

Parents of the students will be encouraged to discuss the moment of silence to help their child decide how to best make use of this time. Students may not interfere with other students’ participation during the moment of silence.

Pledge of Allegiance

The current policy authorizes staff members to lead students in the Pledge of Allegiance each school day.  Students cannot be required to participate and cannot be intimidated by staff or other students for the purpose of coercing participation. 

The proposed change will require that a written notice be published in the LCS Student Code of Conduct Book informing that a student has the right to not take part in reciting the Pledge of Allegiance.

If a parent has given a written request, the student will be excused from the pledge. This includes, not standing up and not placing their right hand over their heart during the pledge.

Celebrate Freedom Week

The Board is proposing a new policy called Celebrate Freedom Week to be recognized during the last full week in September. During the week, students will focus on the intent, meaning and importance of the Declaration of Independence, and will also recite a part of the Declaration.

Students may be excused from reciting the Declaration of Independence upon written request by a parent.

Veterans Day

The Board is proposing a new policy to require an observance related to Veterans Day which will include a discussion of the meaning and importance of that day to students. Each school will devote at least one whole class period to this observance, and conduct specific activities after consultation with the school’s administrators.

11 Responses to "Leon County School Board to Address “Religious/Patriotic Ceremonies and Observances”"

  1. Could not help but notice that almost all the responses supporting the Pledge were from Older Americans. That tells you a lot about the where we are today.

  2. It sounds okay to me, I guess.. Though WHY wouldn’t a parent want their child to say the Pledge of allegiance? I have never heard of such a thing! I think that parent should be queried and investigated. It sounds UNAmerican to do that.. but by damn- its encouraging Communism if you don’t!

  3. Children do not begin to be able to have the cognitive ability to determine their own unique belief systems until their teen years.
    At this point, they are beginning to lay the foundations for abstract reasoning. Each person proceeds at their own rate, I know many college students still working on these ideas. .
    Children and teens primarily learn by imitation and find great comfort and security in our unified values. There is evidence to show that American values (belonging to a great nation, belonging to a unified value system) help children to form mental resiliance.
    I believe that supporting the traditions of our country brings us together and helps us support each other.
    Tearing it apart is distructive to our children and their future.

  4. Emblazoned on the gym wall at my public high school was, “What you are is God’s gift to you. What you make of yourself is your gift to God.” I don’t know how many kids noticed it – no one ever said anything about it being there. I remember striving to jump higher or run faster, those words running through my mind. They STILL run through my mind today. I know we can’t go back to a time when inspirational murals offended no one, but what a shame for the kids who won’t hear this kind of powerful truth about hard work outside of school, either.

  5. In the 1940s and 50s, we proudly stood with hands over our hearts reciting the Pledge to our Flag, bowed our heads and recited the Lord’s Prayer and listened to an Old Testament scripture read to us. Those who did not wish to say the Lord’s Prayer simply did not say it. This was done K-12 in all public schools in Florida so far as I know. WW II was over, at a great cost of many of our fathers. We were also not allowed to curse publicly in school. You could also be sent “to the office” for misbehaving. What a shame the Supreme Court said that was not necessary when a bitter agnostic sued to have the Lord’s Prayer and Bible reading removed. The result, so far as I can tell, has not improved our society or culture.
    We also sang sacred music in choirs as well as secular music.

  6. I just think that students should be taught the truth. Life is a two-way street of give and take; it is not a one-way street of take and take.

    A Skeptic, it was a blessing that you had a teacher that cared about your future and his other students’ futures.

  7. My favorite teacher of all time was my 5th grade teacher, 60 years ago. He was an exceptional instructor, but he brought so many life lessons to us that we didn’t understand at the time. I still recall during a discussion one day how he was trying to instill in us a thirst for knowledge and understanding. On his desk were several books, as there always was. He described them and explained that “if I can only have 3 books it would be these three. 1 (I don’t recall it now), 2 is an English dictionary, and 3 is the Bible”. With them there’s almost nothing that you can’t understand.

    I can just imagine what kind of trouble he’d be in today for making such statements to 10 year olds!

  8. If students have the right to not recite the Pledge of Allegiance and have the right to not recite the Declaration of Independence, why don’t taxpayers have the right not to pay for their education?

  9. If American History was taught correctly, the Students would not have a problem participating in the Moment of Silence, Pledge of Allegiance, Celebration of Freedom Week and Veterans Day.

  10. The proposed change to the existing Pledge of Allegiance policy seem unnecessary and intentionally anti-American. The current policy already states that a student cannot be required to participate, intimidated, or coerced. Their is no need to expound on it.

    If our Public Indoctrination System taught proper history and civics instead of hate and activism, the students (and parents) would already know their rights as protected by our Constitution.

  11. Look at the fake groomer smiles in the photo. Inside their twisted groomer heads they are full of hate and disrespect for America’s beloved Govornor. Because Govornor Desantis dragged their perverted butts kicking and screaming into this manditory Ceremonies and Observances for our childern and grandchildern’s benifit. This is a great start for Florida and every precious red and yellow black and white Florida child.

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