CYPRESS, Texas — It’s on our coins and in some public buildings.
Now there’s debate over “In God We Trust” signs on display in Texas public schools.
“We just felt like it was a great opportunity to display our national motto in our public schools,” said TX Rep. Tom Oliverson of the Houston area.
Oliverson co-authored a bill that recently became law making it mandatory for a public school to display “In God We Trust” signs if they’re privately donated like a batch given to Carroll ISD near Dallas-Fort Worth just this week.
"This was a idea that I had after seeing something similar happen in a couple of different states,” said Dr. Oliverson.
The Yellow Rose of Texas Republican Women posted of number of photos on Facebook showing framed signs volunteers made before donating them to a number of Cy-Fair ISD schools.
“As part of the National Motto program, The Yellow Rose of Texas Republican Women (TYRTRW) are generously donating a copy to every instructional facility in CFISD,” the district said in a statement.
"It’s a disgrace,” said Cy-Fair parent Aly Fitzpatrick. "These groups are hijacking our public education.”
Oliverson said most of the feedback he’s gotten has been extremely positive.
But there are definite signs that not everyone is on board.
“I think it reminds us that we are a nation that believes in a power greater than ourselves,” said Oliverson.
"The point is we are America and not everyone does believe in the same God," said Fitzpatrick. "And telling children that is very confusing.”
State Sen. Bryan Hughes also sponsored the bill and had this to say about it:
“The national motto asserts our collective trust in a sovereign God. I co-authored the bill in 2003 that allowed schools to display it, and last year went further, saying not only is a school allowed to display that statement of faith, but a school must do so if there is no cost associated with the display.
The legislature is always looking to increase community involvement in our schools, so I’m encouraged to see groups coming forward to provide these reminders of the motto to future generations. “
Cy-Fair ISD's full statement can be read below:
Senate Bill 797, as passed by the 87th Legislative Session, requires a public elementary or secondary school or an institution of higher education to display in a conspicuous place a framed copy or durable poster of the national motto, “In God We Trust,” under certain circumstances:
- Donated or purchased from private donations
- Representation of the U.S. flag centered under the national motto, and representation of the state flag
- No other words, images, or language
As part of the National Motto program, The Yellow Rose of Texas Republican Women (TYRTRW) are generously donating a copy to every instructional facility in CFISD.