The Katherine Smith Elementary School in Houston held an assembly on Tuesday. The program — which was forwarded to Houston radio host Joe Pags — was innocently titled, “A Dream Come True – Living in the present by remembering the past and looking forward to the future.”
According to the program, the show featured three cast members — one student acting as a speaker and two as Michelle and Barack Obama, and students singing seven songs. As you might expect from the title of the show, and the image below (also from the cover page), most of the songs are a salute to civil rights heroes like Rosa Parks and Dr. Matin Luther King, Jr. But there is also considerable adoration heaped upon President Obama.
While the majority of the program might be considered to be an over-the-top tribute to President Obama, the very first song, “Feels Like Change” actually takes a shot at President Bush.
The rest of the songs, as they were performed:
I Have A Dream – Dr. King is the complete focus of this song.
It’s A New Day – This song sounds more like something that was sung the morning after Obama’s first win in 2008.
I Believe – Another song with lyrics that seem to come from 2008 and the days leading up to and just after the election.
This One’s For You – This song is a complete tribute or salute to President Obama.
Following that Obama tribute was another song that tied the president to Rosa Parks and Dr. King.
“Rosa Sat” is quoted on the front page of the program and includes an oft-repeated refrain:
Rosa sat so Martin could walk
Martin walked so Barack could Run
Barack ran, he ran and he won
So that all our children could fly.
Those words are repeated six times during the song. But there are some other verses that have raised eyebrows from parents:
Thousands of people that November night.
All of us here were for the long fight.
Now we’re as one,
Creating a new nation.
Join together in celebration.
By having students sing “all of us here were for the long fight” assumes that 100% of the children were supporters of the president. Were they? Additionally, some parents have asked about the line saying, “Now we’re as one, creating a new nation.”
TheBlaze has contacted the Katherine Smith Elementary School several times, requesting an interview with Principal Salazar. As of this writing, Ms. Salazar has not responded to this request. We have also asked Terry Greer, the Superintendent of the Houston Independent School District to comment on the topic.
As this story was going to press, we received the following response from Superintendent Greer’s spokesperson.
The song lyrics you received were used as part of an after-school PTO program celebrating Black History Month at the school. Students who participated had signed permission slips from their parents to participate in this after-school event. They danced to the music, but did not sing or otherwise recite the lyrics. Copies of the lyrics were given to the parents, but not the students. This program was organized by three first-year teachers, who mistakenly failed to get the principal’s approval to distribute the song lyrics. After reviewing the lyrics, the principal agrees that some of the songs were overly political and should not have been included in the program. The teachers who coordinated the program have been reminded that materials such as this must receive prior approval by the principal in the future. The principal apologizes to those who may have been offended by some of the lyrics that were included in the PTO program.
How do you feel about the program?
(H/T: Joe Pags Show)