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First-grade class presents flag to school

By Staff
Brenda Stewart of Meridian is a first-grade teacher at West End Elementary School. Stewart is a veteran teacher with 21 years of experience in city schools, including eight at West End; she teaches one of seven first-grade classes at West End.
By Brenda Stewart / special to The Star
May 27, 2004
My students and I noticed that our flag at school was quite faded.
We decided that we would buy a new flag and present it to the school on Tuesday as the culminating activity for our "Let Freedom Ring" unit of study.
Since the father of Michael Griffin, one of my students, just returned home after 16 months in Iraq and will be returning there in a few months, we asked him if he would raise the flag for us.
Michael helped his father, Mike Gordon, who is a specialist in the U.S. Army Reserves.
The students made patriotic hats to wear, did a drill team routine and sang "You're a Grand Old Flag" as part of the flag dedication ceremony.
Mr. Clay, the music teacher, led us in singing "My Country Tis of Thee."
Saying the Pledge of Allegiance outdoors at school reminded me of being a student at Highland Elementary many years ago. Back then, we would line up outside the school each morning when the principal rang the hand bell, sing patriotic songs and say the Pledge of Allegiance.
Since we have a number of students at our school who have relatives in the services, we presented the flag to our school in honor of the men and women in the U.S. military.