Mom Upset Over Son's Assignment to Recite Pledge of Allegiance in Spanish

Mom Upset Over Son’s Assignment to Recite Pledge of Allegiance in Spanish

Melissa Taggart says she was delighted that her son was learning a foreign language in the eighth grade – until she learned he was expected to recite the Pledge of Allegiance in Spanish.

And that he’d receive a zero if he didn’t.

Taggart, of Edmond, Okla., said the Pledge should be recited in English – and English only.

“English is our language…and I just feel it’s wrong that he would have to say the Pledge of Allegiance to the United States of America in Spanish. It’s just wrong,” a frustrated Taggart told Fox 4 Oklahoma City.

She said she couldn’t begin to understand why her son’s teacher would choose the Pledge for her class. And she was upset that her son was told he would receive a zero if he did not complete the assignment.

“There are poems, lyrics, and great writes that she could have chosen that emphasize the Spanish culture and to teach our children,” Taggart said. “Why the Pledge of Allegiance?”

She said she and her husband were appalled by the assignment and that they “don’t believe in it, and I do not want my child doing it."

“I just feel that it’s wrong,” she told Fox 4, “that he’ll have to say the Pledge of Allegiance to the United States of America in Spanish. That’s not how it should be taught. That has nothing to do with the Spanish language.”

But Brenda Lyons, associate superintendent and public information officer for the Edmond School District defended the class assignment, saying the school’s language curriculum calls for students to translate and recite something that they are familiar with.

“The Pledge assignment has been in place for years.” Lyons told “It is written in the curriculum for Spanish that students need to learn something they are familiar with, like short phrases in the foreign language.”

She said students and parents were made aware of the assignment at the beginning of the school year, and added: “If a parent has an issue with an assignment and calls in advance of that assignment being given, then the student can be given an alternative assignment.”

Lyons said the Taggarts did not call the school to complain prior to the assignment, “so her son was given a zero for a test grade because he failed to complete the Pledge of Allegiance in Spanish.”

But after hearing Taggart’s complaint, the schoolis bending a bit in this case. The boy’s teacher, after giving him a zero, is now allowing him to complete another assignment to replace the Pledge.’s Meghan Baker contributed to this report.
Click here for more on this story from Fox 4 Oklahoma City.

I actually agree with the school on this one.

I do too. This is a very clear case of the parent not paying any attention until it’s too late. The school very clearly had a provision in there that if there was a problem with an assignment and you let them know before hand they could arrange for a different assignment.
Why make a mountain out of a molehill?

So do I. Its not like as if the school is making the ENTIRE school body recite the Pledge in Spanish.

This mom needs to get overherself and stop whining. She should be happy that her son is getting such a good education and gets to learn a foreign language a year early (most kids have to wait for high school). Saying the Pledge of Allegiance in Spanish is not a big deal. Many Americans today come from Spanish-speaking countries. :rolleyes:

Now, if the assignment was to come up with a Satanic prayer in Spanish, then I could see her getting upset, but this is ridiculous.

English is ‘supposed’ to be the ‘official’ language of the USA. The school had no business making the Pledge of Allegiance in Spanish.

If you’re in the US, LEARN THE LANGUAGE!

My mother was an immigrant from Germany in the 1920s. She spoke German at home, but she learned ENGLISH in school!

I’m getting really tired of kowtowing to non-English-speakers…:mad:

This sounds like me being upset because my son has to read out loud a text in Latin talking about the advantage of studying the Latin language in the USA. :confused:


We were not allowed to speak English in our house when we were growing up. “Deutsch sprechen!” My mother (French) learned to speak English “on the fly.” (German was the only language my parents had had in common when they married).

This reminds me of when I had to learn a hymn in Latin in school. What for?

Maybe the woman was upset because she found out that a socialist wrote the Pledge?

So you are saying that Americans should be so stupid not to study foreign languages? Are you saying that Americans should not be able to present their ideas, history and documents to the rest of the world because they are too stupid to learn anything else? Are you saying that the USA should completely relinquish its international status because we do not care about studying other languages? Do you have any clue of how many people speak Spanish in this world? Do you think that we should exclude them from our economical and political sphere of influence? Is this an hymn to stupidity through acceptance of ignorance?

I think you missed the point completely. The point was to get the students to translate something familiar into Spanish as an exercise in learning the language; it was clearly not the point of the assignment to insist that the Pledge usually be said in Spanish. I think we can safely assume that English is the usual language spoken in this school.

Some parents will complain about anything (actually, had they expressed their displeasure when they had the chance, no matter how silly the protest, another assignment would have been given.)

One of the local groups here begins their monthly meetings with the Pledge of Allegiance recited in French. Haven’t heard any complaints-except from my son who thinks it’s weird.:slight_smile:

I agree with the school on several points:

First - reciting it in Spanish is not treason or the refutiation of the Pledge - come on already!

Second - reciting it in Spanish, is a great way for the Hispanic students to understand, see, acknowledge and accept that America is for them as well. Hearing it in their language great.

Third - Spanish is becoming America’s second language - not it’s legal language - but the 2nd most spoken language in America. Like French/English in Canada.

Fourth - There is a whole series of job’s for people who are bilingual in English/Spanish. Learning Spanish has a return on investment beyond a new language.

Fifth - Puerto Rico made Spanish the official lanuage of the Island a few years back, in anticipation of it’s potential future as a US State. They did not want to join, and then be stripped of their culture. If Puerto Rico ever become a state, then America will truly have two official languages.

This is a classic example of reading sinister motives into inocuous things. It sounds as though the school handled the whole thing pretty well.

When I was in high school, we learned the Sign of the Cross, Our Father, Haily Mary, and Glory Be in Spanish. No one took it as an affront to the Catholic faith. :shrug:

WHAT? Spanish in a Spanish class? What’s next? Proper English in English class?

What an absurd complant.

By the way, since when does the United States have an Official Language? Can someone point me to the law declaring it, because I was under the impression it had never been done at the Federal level.

  1. There is no official language of the United States.

  2. If you’re in the U.S, I agree you should learn the language, but these were English speaking Americans enrolled in a Spanish language class, if the school has no business making students in Spanish class learn and speak Spanish, then what business does the school have doing anything in any class???

  3. Nobody is asking anybody to “kowtow” to anyone. Perhaps if we look beyond a person’s language and recognize their essential humanity, we could more easily act with charity towards them. They may or may not be Americans, but they are quite likely fellow members of the Mystical Body, which trumps national origin.

What a bizarre thing to complain about. She was happy he was in Spanish class, presumably happy he knew the pledge - why not learn it in Spanish. Translating familiar things into a foreign language is not an unusual technique. I don’t get it.

I’m with the school on this one. It sounds like the student needed the zero. If you are in Spanish class, completing your assignments in Spanish is assumed, just like using algebra is assumed in Algebra class.

While, as I understand it, there is no OFFICIAL law declaring English the official language, anyone who is honest with themselves will tell you that it is the de facto standard. It is common to expect immigrants to learn the language, just look at France. Not only do you have to learn the language, but the French take care so as not to let dirty foreign words into their pure and spotless tongue.

Really, most immigrants at least try to learn. It’s not like learning a new language is easy, and if the first generation doesn’t learn, their kids will.

But in this case the school is totally in the right here, and I’m just happy they’re still saying the pledge in ANY language.

I am a spanish major and will be graduating next May.

Sounds like what the parents were made aware of was the requirement for students to “translate and recite something that they are familiar with.” So far, so good. No problem.

It also sounds like the teacher (or someone in the administration… in any event, *not *the student) is the one who decided that the “something that they are familiar with, that they are to translate and recite” would be the Pledge. That is where the problem lies.