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Middle School Principal Censors Student Patriotic Speech

It’s scary to think that some people in charge of running a school believe they are above the constitution.

Unfortunately for Saint Bonaventure Catholic School student Jimmy Hayward, Principal Mary Flock felt the need to censor a speech at a school election rally.

Hayward was running for Commissioner of School Spirit & Patriotism and was unable to give his speech for standing firm on his beliefs.

Instead of speaking to his fellow classmates about the importance of showing respect to veterans during the National Anthem, he was forced to sit and listen on stage to the other candidates speeches.

Fox News adds comments from Hattie Ruggles, the mother of Jimmy Hayward:

Heyward’s mother, Hattie Ruggles, claims her son was told to remove “all parts about patriotism” from his campaign speech or he would not be allowed to deliver it before the school assembly. In the speech, the student talks about the importance of showing respect to veterans during the National Anthem or when reciting the Pledge of Allegiance.

“Jimmy stood up to her and said he wasn’t going to take the parts about patriotism out of his speech,” Ruggles wrote in a petition calling on Flock to be fired. “She then told him he would not be speaking. Jimmy sat on stage with all the other candidates while they said their speeches. Mary Flock directed the kids hosting the rally to skip Jimmy entirely. He was on the stage for an hour in front of his peers/teachers/parents being completely humiliated by Mary Flock.”

Jimmy’s father would confront the Flock and the vice principal at the assembly, accusing them of not allowing Jimmy to speak due to differing beliefs.

Ruggles even adds the emails sent home from Flock explaining why Jimmy was unable to present his speech were a lie:

Fox News adds the statement from St. Bonaventure Catholic School about the incident:

“St. Bonaventure Catholic School is dedicated to fostering a Catholic, Christ-centered learning environment that builds a community valuing respect and integrity. We encourage freedom of speech, recognizing that allowing students to express their thoughts and ideas is crucial for their growth and development. In line with this, our longstanding policy requires all student speeches delivered on campus to undergo an administrative approval process. This practice ensures that the content is appropriate, aligns with school values and our Christian Code of Conduct, and maintains a respectful tone. The process is applied uniformly to all students without exception,” the school said.

“If a speech does not receive final approval, we adhere to our established guidelines, which means the student will not be permitted to deliver the speech. In this recent case, school administrators felt encouraged by the words of patriotism but were discouraged by what is perceived as some negative comments and sought adjustments to make it more positive.”

“We understand the disappointment the recent situation may have caused. However, to preserve the integrity of St. Bonaventure School’s practices and its Christ-centered learning environment, we stand by our decision and our policies. We remain committed to maintaining a consistent and fair approach for all students.”

While the school may be supporting Flock and her decision, many people are flocking to X to not only provide support for Jimmy, but call for her to be fired:

Support for Jimmy:

In 2024, the freedom of speech should not be questioned at this point, particularly when the speech is promoting patriotism and respect for veterans.


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