Kindergarteners Learn Yes We Can Obama Song at Tipps Elemntary School in TexasKindergarteners at a Texas elementary school were sent home with lyrics to a pro-President Barack Obama song that included such lines as “Barack Obama is the man” and “He’s our man, yes we can!”

The song, part of a Black History Month program, was forwarded from a parent at Tipps Elementary School in Houston to Joe “Pags” Pagliarulo, a nationally syndicated radio host and frequent fill-in for Glenn Beck. Included with the lyrics was an apparent memo to kindergarten teachers that said kindergarteners would be “required” to learn the chant for the program [all spelling errors below are original]:

Team:

Attached is a chant about President Barack Obama.  All Kindergarteners will be required to learn the chant for the Black History program.  Please write how many you will need.  Keep one copy to practice with students at school.

Thanks,
Mary Stovall
Bridgette Babineaux

The Barack Obama Song

Who is our 44th President?
Obama is our 44th President
Who is a DC resident?
Obama is a DC resident
Resident, President

Who’s favorite team is the Chicago White Sox?
Obama’s favorite team is the Chicago White sox
Who really thinks outside the box?
Obama really thinks outside the box
Outside the box, Chicago White Sos
Resident, President

Who really likes to play basketball?
Obama really likes to play basketball
Who’s gonna answer our every call?
Every Call, Basketball
Outside the box, Chicago White Sox
Resident, President

Who’s famous slogan is Yes we can?
Obams’s famous slogan is Yes we can
Who do we know is the man?
Barack Obama is the man
He’s our man, Yes we can!
Every Call, Basketvall
Outside the box, Chicago White Sox
Resident, President
Who won a grammy for “Dreams of my Father”?
Obama won a grammy for “Dreams of my Father”?
Now can you guess who’s a famous author
Barack Obama is a famous author

Famous Author, Dreams of my Father
He’s our man, Yes we can!
Every Call, Basketball
Outside the box. Chicago White Sox
Resident President

Who wants to go to college at Yale?
Malia & Sasha will go to college at Yale
Who’ll make sure they won’t fail?
Barack & Michelle know they won’t fail

They won’t fail, they’re going to Yale
Famous Author, Dream of my Father
He’s our man, Yes we can!
Every Call, Basketball
Outside the box, Chicago White Sox
Resident, President

After receiving the lyrics, Pagliarulo sent the following email to Pam Redd, principal of Tipps Elementary School:

Dear Principal Redd,

Hi there.. my name is Joe Pagliarulo.. I go by Joe Pags on the radio.  I had a listener contact me today.. with the attached document.  I’m confused.  How exactly is holding this president up on high — indoctrinating little children to believe what YOU want them to believe about this president a good lesson for Black History Month.. What’s said in the document is nothing less that proselytizing YOUR feelings for the president.  You can love him.  You can vote for him.  You can be proud that he’s the first Black president — which would be appropriate for this month’s program.  But, you DO NOT get to tell the taxpayers who pay your salary that their kids have to genuflect to the alter you’ve clearly built to this president.  I’d LOVE to have you on my show.  I’d LOVE for you to explain to those who pay your salary why YOUR political beliefs are the ones THEIR kids have to get in lock-step with.

Really looking forward to hearing from you.

Regards,

Pags

Listen to Pagliarulo discuss the song during his radio program:

The Tipps Elementary principal’s office would not comment on the matter, directing all inquiries to the communications department at the Cypress-Fairbanks Independent School District.

Kelly Durham, the district’s assistant superintendent for communications, defended the song during a telephone interview with The Blaze and called it “an instructional activity to honor Black History Month.” The kindergartners will be perform it during an evening school program, she said.

Durham said each grade level was assigned a different historical figure to profile, and the kindergarteners got Obama — an appropriate figure because “he’s the president of the United States.” Durham said she knew one other grade level had been assigned Rosa Parks, but did not know who the remaining grades received.

She disputed the characterization that it was a “requirement” for kindergarteners to learn the song, saying all students were given permission slips for their parents to sign before they were allowed to take part.

“As a parent, you would have the right to say I don’t want my child participating in this,” Durham said.

She said she didn’t know whether the permission slips detailed what the activity would involve, and said she hadn’t heard whether any parents disagreed with the song. Of the school’s 194 kindergarteners, only 25 will be participating in the program — a number Durham said is typical for an evening school activity, and not necessarily reflective of parents’ feelings on the subject matter.

“They [parents] understand that President Obama is the president and he’s the first African American president and February is Black History Month,” she said.

Durham said she did not know who wrote the chant or whether it was approved by a school administrator before it was distributed to students. She told The Blaze the version used by teachers was “different” from the one sent to Pagliarulo, but said she did not know how.

Addressing the song on his show, Pagliarulo called it a clear case of “proselytizing” and indoctrination.

“Am I suggesting mentioning the first black president of the United States should not have been included in the program? No,” Pagliarulo told The Blaze. “What I’m saying is having your kids and mine bow down to his majesty and propping him up as ‘the man’ and ‘yes we can’ and ‘thinking out of the box’ and ‘answering every call’ and pretending that’s somehow a lesson in black history is historically wrong and not the job.”

This post has been updated with additional comments from the Cypress-Fairbanks Independent School District.

(h/t Joe “Pags” Pagliarulo)