Alexandria-Monroe High School: Student Punished for Refusing to Stand Still During the Pledge of Allegiance


Case Overview

On March 22, 2023, Jace Lower was walking through the hallway to his class at Alexandria-Monroe High School, a public school in Indiana, when the Pledge of Allegiance began to play over the school’s PA system. School staff told Lower to stop walking, to which he responded that he was not required to stop for the pledge. The principal then cited Lower for insubordination and assigned him one day of detention. On July 11, FIRE wrote Alexandria-Monroe, explaining that Lower’s punishment violated the First Amendment’s prohibition on compelled speech. The school responded on July 20, confirming that it had removed the infraction from Lower’s record and affirming its commitment to its First Amendment obligations.