First Amendment topicsAbout the First Amendment
News Story
print this   Print

Justices turn away dress-code case

By The Associated Press

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court is declining to review a Texas school district dress code that prohibited student clothing that featured political commentary.

Without comment today, the justices rejected an appeal from a high school senior in suburban Dallas who sued the Waxahachie Independent School District, accusing it of violating his free-speech rights.

Paul "Pete" Palmer, now a senior, first sought to wear a T-shirt supporting John Edwards' presidential campaign in 2007. He later asked permission to wear other shirts with political messages, including one that had "Freedom of Speech" on the front and the First Amendment printed on the back.

The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the code last August in Palmer v. Waxahachie Independent School District, saying the policy’s intent was to eliminate distractions.

5th Circuit backs Texas school in T-shirt dispute
Paul 'Pete' Palmer had argued free-speech right to wear John Edwards campaign shirt; panel found dress code 'content neutral' and intended to avert distractions from education. 08.14.09


Texas student appeals T-shirt ruling to high court

By David L. Hudson Jr. If justices decide to hear 'Pete' Palmer's case, they could provide needed guidance in school dress-code disputes. 10.20.09

Blog: Students lose with high court's denial

By David L. Hudson Jr. Refusal to take Texas T-shirt case is blow to student expression. 01.11.10

Clothing, dress codes & uniforms

News summary page
View the latest news stories throughout the First Amendment Center Online.

Last system update: Friday, April 23, 2010 | 16:00:31
About this site
About the First Amendment
About the First Amendment Center
How to contribute
First Amendment programs
State of the First Amendment

Religious liberty in public schools
First Reports
Supreme Court
First Amendment publications
First Amendment Center history
Freedom Sings™
First Amendment

Congressional Research Service reports
Guest editorials
FOI material
The First Amendment

Lesson plans
Contact us
Privacy statement
Related links