The U.S. Supreme Court last week refused to hear the appeal of a Texas high school cheerleader who was dismissed from the squad after she refused to cheer for a basketball player she accused of sexually assaulting her.
The cheerleader and her parents sued the Silsbee Independent School District, near Beaumont, Texas, on the grounds that officials violated her right to equal protection and her free-speech right to not cheer in symbolic protest.
A grand jury declined to indict the player in the case. According to court papers filed by the school district, the cheerleader’s refusal to cheer for him caused a disruption in the stands, and officials told her she had to participate in the cheers or leave. A federal court dismissed the family’s claims.
A version of this article appeared in the May 11, 2011 edition of Education Week as U.S. Supreme Court Refuses Appeal of ‘Silent’ Cheerleader