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Parents Challenge Children's Dismissal from Church-Run School

Can a church-operated school be sued for dismissing a student?

Key point: A church-operated school generally cannot be sued for dismissing a student unless the dismissal violates a contractual right or the school clearly abused its discretion in enforcing its policies and regulations.

• An Ohio appeals court dismissed a lawsuit brought by the parents of two children challenging the legality of their children's dismissal by a church-operated school. A couple enrolled their two children, ages 8 and 10, in a church-operated private school. The couple signed an application for enrollment specifying that they would "uphold the student handbook." The school handbook contained a provision stating that "[i]f a parent has a question or concern related to a classroom situation, he should first meet with the particular classroom teacher. If the matter is not resolved, the administrator is the proper person to contact …. If a parent feels that ...

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  • July 1, 1994

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50-State Religious Freedom Laws Report
50-State Religious Freedom Laws Report
A review of state laws and court decisions affecting church leaders.