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Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Fletching a Regents

The following is from the Wall Street Journal Online

1. First it notes the following ban. 

A school district in Massachusetts has banned the Pledge of Allegiance from its classrooms, Fox News reports:
Charles Skidmore, principal of Arlington High School in Arlington, Mass., has offered to allow students to recite the pledge before school begins--but in the school's foyer and not in the classrooms, as 17-year-old Harrington had hoped.
Kathleen Bodie, Arlington superintendent of schools, told Fox News Radio that "The principal wanted to be very respectful about the pledge and be sensitive to the Supreme Court ruling that students are not forced to say the pledge. He wanted to be sensitive to the diverse group of students we have."
Bodie said there has been reluctance to put the district's teachers in a position of reciting the pledge, and she acknowledged that some have raised concerns about its inclusion of the words "under God."
2. Far be it from a Modern to suggest that the will of the Government is "under" anything.  "Everything within the state; nothing outside the state; nothing against the state."  Right?  The WSJ then suggests an explanation for the ban. 

Now you may think these teachers are unpatriotic. But there's another possible explanation. Consider this AP dispatch:
The school superintendent in Springfield, Mass., has taken responsibility for tests given to the district's 11th- and 12th-graders that were rife with spelling, grammatical and factual errors.
Two tests given in May to about 2,600 students contained about 100 errors combined.
The mistakes included the phrases "truning around" and "For God's skae," as well as a note on one test that read "This is the end of the Test," when there were two more pages.
If Massachusetts teachers can't get simple phrases like these right, how can they possibly be expected not to bungle the Pledge of Allegiance?

3. So the ban is really an attempt to prevent embarrassment to the teachers. 

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