Denial of Motion to Dismiss in Elementary School Free Speech Case Upheld

By FindLaw Staff on July 01, 2010 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

Morgan v. Swanson, No. 09-40373, concerned an action alleging that defendant elementary school officials banned the distribution of religious materials.  The court of appeals affirmed the denial of defendants' motion to dismiss based on qualified immunity, holding that the First Amendment protected elementary school students from religious-viewpoint discrimination.

As the court wrote:  "This appeal arises from the district court's denial of Lynn Swanson and
Jackie Bomchill's (Appellants) Second Motion to Dismiss based on qualified immunity. Appellants argue, as they did below, that the First Amendment does not apply to elementary school students. Because it has been clear for over half a century that the First Amendment protects elementary school students from religious-viewpoint discrimination, we AFFIRM."

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