SCHS implements weekly Pledge of Allegiance

To fulfill legal requirements, fix the bell schedule and show unity as a country, SCHS starts the Pledge

It’s Wednesday morning, and students are sitting in their third period class, waiting for the bell. When it rings, they stand, place their hands on their hearts, and in unison with the student on the announcement speaker, begin to recite the Pledge of Allegiance.

Beginning this school year, SCHS will be reciting the Pledge every Wednesday morning. Reciting the Pledge in high schools is legally required, according to the California Education Code. When SCHS needed to add one more minute in order to fix the bell schedule, they took it as the perfect opportunity to implement the Pledge.

“I believe this will help us recognize that the flag is not a symbol of one party or group, but what this country can be all together, and what we can fight to make it be,” Shelby said.

A different student will be saying the Pledge each week, and after the Pledge is said, the remaining time will be used for the usual daily announcements.

Some students chose not to stand or recite the Pledge. One of these students is sophomore Charlie Velasquez, who views sitting during this time as her small act of civil protest.

“I don’t agree with the president and I don’t agree with a lot of the morals in our country, such as immigrants not having rights, LGBT people not having rights, capitalism and a lot of other things,” Velasquez said. She choses to sit because, as the child of two immigrants, the Pledge doesn’t mean as much to her as it used to.

Senior Grace Wills, ASB president, believes that one should stand for the Pledge even if they don’t like the current government, in honor of the sacrifices that were made to get America to where it is today.

“[The Pledge] means respect for the people who built our country and got it to where it is now. Lots of people lost their lives for this country and we should respect that,” Wills said.

Another student who chooses to sit out is sophomore Anjali Mathi. She doesn’t feel able to pledge herself to our country in current times.

“For a long time, at least to me, the Pledge represented what this country was about, and the sense of patriotism and nationalism that a lot of us hold close to our hearts,” Mathi said, “That’s been warped by our current administration and the way people are treating each other today.”

Whether they sit or stand, speak or remain silent, a student’s decision will be respected.

“I would be a hypocrite if you said you had to do it, because that denies the very freedom America is all about,” Shelby said.