Saying the Pledge

It's not the pledge itself, but the words, "one nation under God", that's the focus of a court case brought by a California atheist who says his daughter is forced to recite the pledge, under God and all, but how widely is the pledge still recited in local schools?

A survey of the schools serving the Mid-Ohio Valley's largest cities says it's practically a mainstay of the instructional day.

Wood County and Belpre city schools say it's recited in their classes every morning. In the case of Wood County, it's required by West Virginia state code.

Ohio leaves the choice up to the schools themselves, and Marietta city schools does, in fact, give its individual principals the option to require it, and in case you think events such as the September 11 attacks have revived the practice, Wood County schools spokeswoman Sue Woodward says, no way. It's been standard operating procedure there for years.

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