This post is going to address some issues from threads that already got closed, but in a different manner. If after a few responses the moderators feel the need to lock this thread, that is fine. I just need to ask an important question. I was e-mailed by the department chair of my college yesterday because it is his job to assist students on their journey to become teachers, and he had some concerns brought to him by a few professors and wanted to point them out since I am a candidate for clinical practice next semester. He was clear that nothing I did violated any academic policies or could get me in trouble with the college, and at this time they are not considering not allowing me to go forward with clinical practice. What he addressed mostly was some behaviors which he didn't really give any examples, but professors mentioned I over-shared some personal information in class at times, mostly before I started my therapy. He also mentioned a few professors mentioning that I don't get involved in socializing with classmates. These are issues I was already aware of and am working on, but it was one another issue he brought up that caused me to give him the evil eye the rest of the meeting. He talked to one of my professors this semester, who is my field course professor to ask if he noticed anything concerning or unusual, he said no, and that the only thing different that most students he noticed is that I didn't stand for the pledge of allegiance with the rest of my classmates. We've had this debate before, so I'm not going into it again on whether schools and kids should or should not say it. The only problem I had with him, is that he seemed to be indirectly calling me out for it as he said that simply not participating is going to cause serious problems with some principals and parents. I thought I was very respectful. I just sat down, didn't interrupt, and didn't say anything about it. Last semester I was in front of kids and another teacher and didn't participate, and nobody said anything to me about it. The teacher and I had a good relationship and I got good ratings from her. He also made another comment that one of my professors didn't seem to agree with. He said if he asked every principal in the area if they would hire a teacher who didn't say the pledge, nearly 100% would say no. Others I told found that to be a very skewed estimate, and most principals in diverse areas are used to having students and teachers who don't say it for religious reasons. Last time we had this discussion in this online community, most people were merely suggesting I don't bring the conversation up about the pledge to avoid the message being misinterpreted, but limiting it to only stating that the students have the option to sit out. His point was questioning whether your convictions are worth not getting or keeping a teaching job. Well, firing or refusing to hire a teacher because they didn't say the pledge would be against the law for one. Also, I honestly feel that if I cannot find a job anywhere in the country over the pledge, I would be willing to move to Canada. I guess my only real important question is this. When I start my student teaching next semester, should I address this with the cooperating teacher from the first day and state that I personally choose not to say the pledge, but I am not making an insulting statement to the country by doing so, or should I just wait until he or she says something and explain? Our department chair seems to think that most teachers will not give me a good letter of recommendation no matter how good I teach simply over the pledge. I was kind of having respect with him up until he brought this up, and now I think he was delivering me a load of crap to try and fear monger me and was patronizing me by saying I have a right to my values and convictions. If you had a teacher candidate working under you, would you simply refuse to give them a good recommendation over the pledge no matter how good they taught?