WANTAGH, N.Y., Nov. 17, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Today, attorneys with Liberty Institute and Bancroft, PLLC, sent a demand letter to school administrators of Wantagh High School in defense of a student's right to form a Christian Club on campus. Follow this link to review the demand letter online: https://www.libertyinstitute.org/daretobelieve
"Students of faith in New York public schools have the same freedom to form and have the school recognize a religious club as other students who want to form a Rube Goldberg Club or the Animal Rights and Recycling Club," said Jeremy Dys, Senior Counsel with Liberty Institute. "School officials on Long Island do not seem to understand that the Equal Access Act of 1984 makes it illegal to deny students—and especially a minority of students—the right to form a Christian club on campus."
Liberty Institute's client, Liz Loverde, applied to form, "Dare to Believe," a Christian club at Wantagh High School, in mid-September. When she presented her club proposal to her principal, the principal told Liz that Christian clubs are "illegal" at school. When Liz asked her to reconsider, the principal began crossing out any reference to Christianity throughout Liz's proposal and ultimately refused to present the club to the Wantagh Board of Education for consideration because the principal feared it would cause too much trouble and parents would oppose a Christian club at Wantagh High School.
"We just want to study the Bible together and serve our classmates and community by exercising the same freedom that everyone else has at our school," said Liz Loverde, the sophomore student who has applied to start Dare to Believe. "Wantagh High School has more than 30 official student clubs. Why won't Wantagh recognize our faith-based student club?"
Wantagh High School is the second Long Island high school this fall to violate the Equal Access Act by denying equal access to a Christian student group. In October, Ward Melville High School refused to recognize Students United in Faith, a Christian club. That school, however, has now agreed to recognize the club.
Liberty Institute is a national nonprofit legal group dedicated to defending and restoring religious liberty across America — in our schools, for our churches, in the military and throughout the public arena. Liberty's vision is to reestablish religious liberty in accordance with the principles of our nation's Founders. For information, visit www.LibertyInstitute.org.
SOURCE Liberty Institute