Houston student kicked out of her high school for sitting during Pledge of Allegiance

A 17-year-old Houston student was booted from her high school after refusing to stand for the daily Pledge of Allegiance, a federal lawsuit charges.

India Landry had sat during the pledge hundreds of times at Windfern High School without incident, she said. However, she was immediately shown the door by school Principal Martha Strother on Monday after declining to stand for the pledge.

Administrators at the school had "recently been whipped into a frenzy" by the controversy caused by NFL players kneeling for the national anthem, according to the lawsuit. NFL players had recently taken action to protest some of President Trump's statements.

The lawsuit also charges that India was told after she was expelled that "if your mom does not get here in five minutes the police are coming."

"I was actually terrified, I see what's going on with the country," India's mother Kizzy told the Daily News on Saturday. "That scared the hell out of me. I thought let me hurry up and get to my baby before something happens to her."

India, a senior, was allowed to return to the school on Friday, but feels uncomfortable about what happened. She missed the pledge on Friday, but said she plans to continue sitting for it next week.

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Fans react to NFL players protesting during national anthem
Oct 8, 2017; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Texans fan holds up signs before the game against the Kansas City Chiefs at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports
ATLANTA, GA - OCTOBER 01: A fan in the stands yells at players during the national anthem prior to the game between the Atlanta Falcons and the Buffalo Bills at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on October 1, 2017 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OH - OCTOBER 01: A Cleveland Browns fan holds a sign in protest durning the nation anthem in the game between the Cleveland Browns and the Cincinnati Bengals at FirstEnergy Stadium on October 1, 2017 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Justin Aller /Getty Images)
HOUSTON, TX - OCTOBER 01: Fans making a statement about the recent national anthem protests during a football game at NRG Stadium on October 1, 2017 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
BALTIMORE, MD - OCTOBER 01: A detail view of a sign displayed by fans during a game between the Pittsburgh Steelers and Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium on October 1, 2017 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)
HOUSTON, TX - OCTOBER 01: Fans making a statement about the recent national anthem protests during a football game at NRG Stadium on October 1, 2017 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
Los Angeles Charger fans make their way to the stadium past Donald Frazell from Los Angeles as he holds a sign near other protesters demonstrating in support of NFL players who "take a knee" before kickoff and during the National Anthem protesting police violence outside the StubHub Center where the Los Angeles Chargers are playing the Philadelphia Eagles in an NFL football game in Carson, California, U.S. October 1, 2017. REUTERS/Danny Moloshok
Oct 1, 2017; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Broncos fans show their support with t-shirts in reference to standing for the American national anthem during the fourth quarter of a game against the Oakland Raiders at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 24, 2017; Charlotte, NC, USA; Carolina Panthers fans hold up signs in the fourth quarter at Bank of America Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 24, 2017; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Cleveland Browns fans during their game against the Indianapolis Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Thomas J. Russo-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 24, 2017; Foxborough, MA, USA; A New England Patriots fan holds a sign as they take on the Houston Texans in the second half at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports
GLENDALE, AZ - SEPTEMBER 25: Fans hold signs before the singing of the National Anthem before the NFL game between the Arizona Cardinals and the Dallas Cowboys at the University of Phoenix Stadium on September 25, 2017 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
At the start of the game protestors take a knee in support of the movement started by NFL player Colin Kaepernick, outside Lincoln Financial Field, in South Philadelphia, PA, on September 24, 2017. Similar protest are staged around the nation after US President Donald Trump named Kaepernick a Son of A Bitch at a recent rally. (Photo by Bastiaan Slabbers/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
CINCINNATI, OH - OCTOBER 8: A fan of the Cincinnati Bengals holds up a sign showing his opposition to players kneeling during the national anthem during the game between the Cincinnati Bengals and the Buffalo Bills at Paul Brown Stadium on October 8, 2017 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by John Grieshop/Getty Images)
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The lawsuit against the Cypress Fairbanks ISD school district states that students cannot be forced to stand for the Pledge, and that the school had no right to kick out India.

"Students cannot be instantly expelled except for being a danger," lawyer Randall Kallinen said. "The only danger appeared to be that her sitting whipped Principal Strother into a political frenzy."

India tells The News that she started sitting for the pledge in ninth grade. She said that "police brutality" and "Donald Trump being President" motivates her to do it, and she was surprised when she got in trouble for it.

"I said I wouldn't, and they said you are kicked out of here," India told the Daily News. "The other woman said this isn't the NFL, you won't do this here."

"I never told her to do this," her mom said. "I'm proud of her for standing up to what she believes in. She said she hopes it just brings awareness of what is going on."

Nicole Ray, a spokeswoman for the school district said she was not aware of the lawsuit and noted a “student will not be removed from campus for refusing to stand for the Pledge.

“We will address this situation internally,” said Ray.

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