The Online Teacher Resource
Receive free lesson plans, printables, and worksheets by email:
- Huge Collection
- Instant Lessons
- 50,000+ printables
- Save Time!
In America, one of the key cornerstones of an educational day can be saying the pledge of allegiance in school. For many, it is one of the main tasks which is completed at the beginning of the day. However, despite this element being so integral, many students do not understand what the purpose of this is - and indeed, why they might be pledging allegiance to the flag. In this article, we are going to look at reasoning, as well as the ethical explorations behind it.
There has also been some controversy as to the wording of the pledge of allegiance, with some believing that 'under God' should be inserted into the pledge - particularly because Christianity is one of the main religions which is followed in the country. However, this has been disputed a number of times. The main reasons for this are because it is believed that such a requirement would be against the Constitution on which America was built upon, as well as against the First Amendment which allows for free speech on the grounds of religion. If a child is going to be made to say a pledge, it can be unethical to make them say 'under God' on this basis.
So - the main reason that the pledge of allegiance is said in schools is to instill a sense of patriotism amongst students. Some believe that it shouldn't be controversial at all because it the process is just what it is described as: a pledge. It is certainly far from being an oath which can bind a student against what they are saying.
The pledge certainly has a lot of history, and this could be another thing which makes it believed to be so important. Because of how the pledge has been prominent in American society for as many as 100 years, it could be said that it could be too big a change and un-traditionalistic if the pledge was to be abandoned now following on from the years of prominence that it has had in the educational arena.
There have been key court cases following on from students who might have refused to involve themselves with the process, which is conducted on a daily basis in most schools. Some states can involve the courts if it is believed that a refusal to state the pledge is disruptive to the rest of the school.
Some would say that there are many more reasons which are associated with why students say the pledge in schools. Following on from various modifications in the word order of the pledge of allegiance, it could have been disputed that some of those who have strong religious beliefs could have contested the requirement to state the pledge - despite peer pressure usually having such an effect where young people can feel that they have a need to conform in order to fit in with the rest of the students with whom they share a classroom with on a daily basis.