District News Roundup
A student who was suspended for wearing an earring in school has been allowed to return to classes with the earring and with the three-day suspension removed from his record.
Bill McCord, assistant superintendent for student services for the DeSoto (Miss.) County Board of Education, said lawyers for the student and the school board reached an agreement last week.
Mr. McCord said the school's dress code allows the principal to suspend a student for wearing anything that can be construed as "disruptive dress." He said that after the meeting, it was determined that the earring was not disruptive.
The 11th grader, Aubry Jacobson, had been suspended from the Southaven High School on Feb. 11 for wearing the earring. When he attempted to return to class the next day, the principal, J.R. Baird, signed an affidavit to have him arrested for trespassing. The trespassing charges were also dropped, Mr. McCord said.
A Chicago high-school student remained in serious condition last week after receiving internal injuries while running in the hallways during an indoor track meet at Tilden High School.
The injured student, Dwayne Hicks of Lindblom High School, slipped and fell into a concrete platform supporting a row of lockers while running the anchor leg of the 800-meter relay during a dual meet, according to school officials.
Following the incident, the Chicago Board of Education temporarily canceled all indoor track meets and all practices that involve running in the corridors, where indoor track meets have been held for generations, according to Orpen W. Bryan, deputy school superintendent for field management.
The board has appointed a special committee to review the safety of indoor track. A final report is due within three weeks, Mr. Bryan said.
A federal appeals court has rejected the argument of a Spokane, Wash., woman who claimed a book her daughter was assigned to read in a high-school English class infringed on her religious rights.
The woman, Carolyn Grove, argued that The Learning Tree--a novel about a teen-age black boy by Gordon Parks--should be removed from the Mead School District curriculum because it violated the religion clauses of the First Amendment, said Jordan W. Lorence, one of the lawyers who helped prepare Ms. Groves's case.
"The book presents the Christian faith as a bunch of baloney; it violates religious neutrality," Mr. Lorence said. "If the Bible should be removed from schools because it promotes religion, then this book should be removed because it disparages religion."
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit upheld the lower court's ruling, which found no merit to her argument, Mr. Lorence said.
The principal lawyer on the case, Michael P. Farris, general counsel for Concerned Women for America in Washington, D.C., intends to appeal the decision to the U.S. Supreme Court, Mr. Lorence added.