Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Public School Ejects Catholic Student over Rosary

A day after a federal judge ordered a New York middle school to reinstate the seventh-grader, who was suspended for wearing the Catholic prayer beads last month, the 13-year-old Schenectady boy is proudly displaying them again.

UPDATE 11/4/10: School required to pay $25,000 for violating 1st Amendment

UPDATE 9/3/10: Ban on rosary dropped, lawsuit ongoing

UPDATE 6/11/10: Judge Extends Order for Boy to Return to School

-- From "Judge Orders School to Reinstate Boy Suspended Over Rosary Beads" by Joshua Rhett Miller, FOX News 6/2/10

[Raymond Hosier wears the rosary beads] in memory of his younger brother, who died while clutching rosary beads following a car accident in 2005.

District officials declined to comment when reached by FoxNews.com, citing pending litigation, but they have contended Hosier violated a policy banning gang-related clothing such as rosary beads, which are sometimes worn as gang symbols. That led the American Center for Law and Justice to file a lawsuit on Tuesday in U.S. District Court arguing that Raymond's suspension last month violated his rights to free speech and religion.

Raymond received a one-week suspension for refusing to remove the beads or hide them under his shirt two weeks ago. He was suspended again last week when he returned to school wearing the beads.

Another school district in New York recently penalized a student for wearing rosaries. In February, a 14-year-old boy in Haverstraw was suspended for a day for wearing the symbol. In late 2008, a high school student in Dallas was told to stop wearing her rosary.

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

From "Judge suspends school's ban on rosary" © 2010 WorldNetDaily 6/2/10

The order comes from U.S. District Judge Lawrence Kahn in federal court in the Northern District of New York.

Kahn's order released yesterday states: "For the time being and until a decision as to plaintiff's application for a preliminary injunction, that defendants … are temporarily and immediately enjoined from preventing plaintiff R.H. from attending public school in the Schenectady City School District while wearing outside his shirt a rosary."

The ACLJ said its lawsuit against the district and its officials, including the principal of Oneida Middle School where the student attends, seeks a jury trial. It alleges the school's actions violated Raymond's constitutional rights of free speech and expression, free exercise of religion and due process under the First and Fourteenth Amendments.

The ACLJ complaint also notes that Raymond has been wearing the rosary since September 2009 without causing "any disruption to the school environment."

Officials said this isn't the first time the Schenectady school system has been sued over a dress code issue. They cited a 2005 case involving a 12-year-old girl who had family members serving in Iraq. She chose to wear a red, white and blue beaded necklace that was banished by the school.

Her case was settled out of court, officials said.

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.