Republican State Rep. Carter Nordman managed House File 415 through the floor on Tuesday evening. The bill requires schools to administer the Pledge of Allegiance each day and display the American flag.
Nordman pointed out that the bill was written with the First Amendment in mind, allowing nonpublic schools to opt-out if it goes against their religious beliefs and public students are not compelled if they object as well.
Iowa is one of just a few states without such language in the code already.
Despite some Democrat objections, Nordman said the bill is not a mandate, but an opportunity for students. He said it is “extremely important” to him that the meaning of the Pledge be taught in Iowa schools.
“But at the end of the day, we don’t pledge our allegiance to a government, we don’t pledge our allegiance to a person or a leader…we pledge our loyalty to an idea – the American idea. We pledge our loyalty to the greatest social experiment to have ever happened on this planet.”
Nordman said not having this in the law has been a disservice to the state, students and the country.