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Win in Federal Court – Student's First Amendment Claim Allowed To Proceed


Olivia Summers

March 6

3 min read

School Choice



This post is an update to a case concerning the sexualization of children by public schools. Recently, the ACLJ won the first step toward a major victory in protecting students from profane, sexually explicit, and obscene material in the classroom when the district court denied in part the defendants’ motion to dismiss – allowing a student’s First Amendment and Nevada state constitutional claims of compelled speech to proceed in court. 

You may recall that last summer, the ACLJ stepped in to assist two parents in their fight against a Nevada public school district that forced their child to perform a pornographic script, lied to the parents, and then prohibited the mother from reading the script given to her child before the school board. Our clients’ daughter, who was 15 at the time, was required to perform a sexually explicit monologue prepared by another student, and edited by the teacher, before the entire class. The monologue – which many will find offensive – is below (edited by our attorneys by adding ***):

I don’t love you. It’s not you, it’s just (looks down) your d***. I don’t like your d*** or any d*** in that case. [Only the first two sentences of the script are included due to the progressively increasing profanity and description of sexual acts. The entire explicit monologue can be found here.]

After learning about this horrific assignment, our clients tried several different avenues to bring their concerns to the school but found it unresponsive to their requests and complaints. Ultimately, a lawsuit was filed against the school district, and the ACLJ, alongside Lex Tecnica Ltd. (a firm committed to protecting students, parents, and teachers from the Clark County School District), represented this family in federal court. 

This week the United States District Court of Nevada denied

the motion to dismiss [the daughter’s] compelled-speech claims brought under the Nevada Constitution and the First Amendment because she sufficiently alleges that she was compelled to read an explicit monologue that lacked a legitimate pedagogical purpose.

This ruling, while just an intermediary step, is a significant win for parental rights, as courts are generally unwilling to interfere with teachers’ decisions on a student’s education and curriculum content.

The court went on to state that the defendant did

not provide the contours of the purported educational purpose that this assignment was meant to fulfill. It instead relie[d] on general statements of law, made in cases dissimilar from this one, cautioning judicial restraint when courts are asked to interfere with a school’s curriculum. But the defendants do not point to any case that holds that courts must simply take schools at their word that every assignment fulfills a legitimate purpose merely because it was on the curriculum, particularly in a situation like this one, in which the type of language contained in that curriculum is similar to language which the Supreme Court has held is a school’s prerogative to proscribe. (emphasis added).

The ACLJ has always been at the forefront of constitutional and parental rights, and we took on this case because schools must be held accountable when they abuse their power, subvert parents, and sexualize children. We will continue to fight for parental rights as we take this case to trial.

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