Equal Access Act Did Not Require a Public High School to Allow Students from an Evangelical Christian Group to Distribute Religious Materials

A California appeals court ruled that the federal "Equal Access Act" did not require a

A California appeals court ruled that the federal "Equal Access Act" did not require a public high school to allow students from an evangelical Christian group to distribute religious materials on school property or place religious advertisements in the school yearbook.

The Act forbids public high schools from restricting the use of school facilities during noninstructional hours by noncurriculum-related student-initiated groups solely on the basis of the content of a group's speech (religious, political, etc.) if the school has created a "limited open forum" by making those same facilities available to other groups.

In this case, concluded the court, the high school had not created a limited open forum since it had never made its facilities available to any noncurriculum-related student group. As a result, the school was not required to accommodate the activities of the religious group in question. Perumal v. Saddleback Valley Unified School District, 243 Cal. Rptr. 545 (4th App. Dist. 1988)

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