Law & Courts A State Capitals Roundup

Pennsylvania Attorney General Will Not Appeal Pledge Ruling

By Caroline Hendrie — October 04, 2004 1 min read

Pennsylvania will not appeal a federal court ruling that struck down a 2002 state law requiring all schools in the state to lead students in the Pledge of Allegiance each day and to notify parents if their children do not recite it.

A three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 3rd Circuit, in Philadelphia, held that the law violated the free-speech rights of students as well as the rights of private schools to freedom of association. (“Pa. Weighs Appeal of Ruling Invalidating Pledge Mandate,” Sept. 22, 2004.)

The ruling upheld the findings of a federal district court judge in the case, which was brought by a public high school student, two parents of private school students, and several secular private schools.

A spokesman for state Attorney General Jerry J. Pappert, a Republican, said last week that the attorney general and state education officials had decided that further appeals would not succeed.

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