Administrators at a Virginia high school have apologized for a plan to have the Pledge of Allegiance said in different languages by students.
Westfield High School in Fairfax came under fire before Thanksgiving by upset parents when they found out that their children were being asked to recite the Pledge in Spanish.
The original plan was to have native speakers of various languages, such as French or German, lead others in the routine.
“A school administrator suggested students lead the pledge in Spanish to promote engagement and inclusion,” a statement released to a local Fox affiliate said. “Administrators believed this was an opportunity for other voices and languages to be heard and recognize the school diversity.”
Fairfax County Public Schools said the program was only supposed to last two days, although Stephanie Somers, a mother of a senior student, says otherwise.
“They had a native Spanish speaker read it Tuesday. End of the school day Tuesday afternoon the principal comes on and says he was sorry. He was sorry, he didn’t want it to be offensive … they canceled the program,” she said Monday. “It was my understanding it would be Spanish, French and German, and I think there’s 80, 90 different languages at this school, and I thought that would be a cool thing. … I was surprised instead of continuing it, they were nixing it and [issuing] an apology.”