‘Gay-Straight Alliance’ Too Provocative for One Florida High School


Isn’t this rich: A Florida high school would have no problem letting students form a gay-straight alliance, if only it didn’t violate school policy … by being called a gay-straight alliance.

Just north of Jacksonville, Yulee High School students Hannah Page and Jacob Brock, backed by counsel from the ACLU, are suing the school board for not letting them form the club.

U.S. District Judge Henry Adams Jr. said he would issue a ruling on a motion for a preliminary injunction “as soon as I can,” but gave Nassau County three days to submit additional written arguments. The students want an injunction to allow them to meet until the case goes to trial.

ACLU Attorney Robert F. Rosenwald Jr. argued that Page and Brock had been the target of anti-gay epithets and threats of violence at school and wanted to start the Gay-Straight Alliance to open a discourse among students.

Attorney Frank Sheppard, who represents the school board, said the district’s main complaint is the name of the group, saying it does not approve of groups dealing with sexual orientation and noted the school has an abstinence-based sex education curriculum.

“If they change the name and comply with Nassau County School Board policies they can meet,” he said.

The judge questioned Sheppard over the school’s objection to the name.

“A Gay-Straight Alliance, that covers everybody doesn’t it?” Adams asked. [AP]