Saturday, May 8, 2010

Lawsuit Filed Over Public School Graduations at Church

Press Release

Americans United and ACLU File Lawsuit Over Public School Graduations at Church

Public Schools Violate Students’ Rights By Holding Commencements In Sectarian Facility

May 5, 2010

Americans United for Separation of Church and State, the ACLU of Connecticut and the American Civil Liberties Union today filed a lawsuit in federal court charging that the Enfield (Conn.) Public Schools’ decision to hold their high school graduation ceremonies at a Christian church unconstitutionally imposes religion on students.
The groups are bringing the legal action on behalf of two Enfield High School seniors and three of their parents. The lawsuit asserts that holding commencement at First Cathedral, a Bloomfield church replete with religious signs and symbols, violates the separation of church and state and the religious liberty rights of students.
The complaint points out that there are many secular facilities in the area that the Enfield Schools could use, including a number that compare favorably to the Cathedral in terms of cost, size and distance from Enfield.

“Public school students have a right to attend their graduation without feeling like they’re taking part in a religious service,” said the Rev. Barry W. Lynn, executive director of Americans United. “The use of a church for this important milestone is clearly inappropriate.”

Read the full press release at

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