Schools Ban Confederate T-Shirts

Shingler v. Seminole County Sch. Dist., No. 6:01-CV-36-WLS (N.D. Ga. 2001)

The Seminole County Board of Education banned the wearing of t-shirts displaying the confederate flag or any "reference to race" even though there have never been any incidents of student unrest due to t-shirts. The ACLU filed suit on behalf of nine students who had been sent home and forced to remove a t-shirt or be disciplined. The court denied a request for preliminary injunction, but affirmed the students’ right to engage in silent, passive expression of their opinions by wearing the t-shirts. The parties engaged in discovery and then reached an agreement by which Defendants rescinded the blanket ban on confederate flag shirts; revised and clarified the dress code in order to protect the free expression of students; provided freedom from dress code restrictions for extra-curricular events; created clear procedures for appeal of dress code discipline; and agreed to provide training to teachers and administrators.(William Shingler/Gerry Weber/Robert Tsai)

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