Here’s another example of school administrators being completely ignorant of the law even when it’s been established for decades. A school in New Jersey repeatedly punished a student for not standing or reciting the pledge of allegiance, but now that they’ve been shown that they were violating the law, they’ve backed down.
Chelsea Stanton, a high school student in New Jersey, who has repeatedly been punished for refusing to stand for the Pledge of Allegiance, has finally won her battle, the Cherry Hill Courier Post reports.
Stanton, a senior and atheist at Collingswood High School, says she objects to the words “one nation under God,” which appear in the pledge.
“I couldn’t bring myself to recite it anymore, because I felt like it didn’t respect me,” Stanton told CBS Philly. “I don’t think any student anywhere should have to stand up for this.”
According to the Cherry Hill Courier Post, she has been sent to administrative offices twice this year for violating the school code of conduct, which requires students to stand for the pledge even if they remain silent.
Yet after doing some research, Stanton found that the law was on her side, not the school’s. A state provision requiring students to stand was held unconstitutional by the United States Court of Appeals in 1978, but was never revised to reflect the ruling, CBS Philly reports.
And the original Supreme Court ruling on this goes all the way back to 1942. Back in the mid-90s, the Clinton administration sent a guidance to all public schools in the country telling them what the law requires on issues like this; far too many school administrators apparently didn’t bother to read it.