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Bill could allow Pledge of Allegiance in classrooms daily

An American flag can be seen almost anywhere you go; in front of schools, churches, and the Capitol, to name a few.

On Thursday, House Bill 499 passed by a vote of 9-0 in committee and will be heard on the House floor in about a week.

It would allow public school students to say the Pledge of Allegiance every day in school, rather than once a week.

Bill sponsor, Republican Representative Shane Roden from Cedar Hill, said his bill is simple.

“It doesn’t force anyone to say the pledge it just allows for that opportunity and also allows for voluntary donation of classroom flags being placed inside the classroom.”

Administrators at Belair Elementary School in Jefferson City said they already say the pledge every morning even though it’s not required.

Although the bill doesn’t require the students to say the pledge, Representative Roden said it’s intended to provide the opportunity.

Another concern is the phrase “under God” that is said in the pledge. Atheist groups said it blurs the line between church and state.

“There are a lot of people who were concerned about it and when the issue started getting brought up some schools just opted not to pursue it,” said Roden.

If the bill is passed this would only allow students to participate in saying the pledge each day. If someone did not want to say it they wouldn’t have to without being punished.

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