Friday, March 20, 2009

Judge Rules Students Can Start GSA at Florida High School

U.S. District Judge Henry Adams ruled last week that two high school students in Yulee, FL could start a gay-straight alliance ("GSA") at Yulee High School after being ordered to stop meeting last October after just one meeting. Judge Adams said that the school district’s argument against allowing the club to meet “strains logic.”

Hannah Page, Yulee High School student and plaintiff, shares her story here.

The school district had told the students that they could not meet unless they changed the name of the group to something that didn’t mention a sexual orientation. Their reasoning was that using the word gay in the name of the club would violate the district’s abstinence only policy. Judge Adams dismissed this claim, noting that “there is no evidence that the alliance counters the relevant abstinence policy in any way.”

Per the judge’s ruling, the school district must:

· Immediately allow the GSA to begin meeting without having to change its name

· Circulate the judge’s order to all teachers and staff within 72 hours

· Not retaliate against any student or faculty for his or her involvement with the alliance

· Recognize the GSA as it would any other extracurricular student organization

Our many thanks to attorney Robert Rosenwald from the ACLU of Florida and U.S. District Judge Henry Adams for bringing equality to Yulee High School!

For more information, click here.

-Erin Cranford Williams

1 comment:

Roger said...

Outstanding news.