Ward Melville High School in New York has reversed its decision to ban students from forming a Christian community service club. The Long Island school had previously denied Students United in Faith from gathering, but after a public outcry, the club will meet like other school clubs do.
Ward Melville students John Raney and Jeremy Johnson formed Students United in Faith with the intention of creating a space where students with similar beliefs could gather and plan service projects to benefit the local community.
Club members joined with the Liberty Institute to fight the school’s ban. A lawsuit was avoided, but attorneys did persuade the school administration to allow Students United in Faith to meet.
Liberty Institute’s Director of Strategic Litigation Hiram Sasser said, "Congress can pass laws and the courts can issue opinions, but if great Americans like John Raney and Jeremy Johnson don't take a bold stand for freedom, we will all lose our liberty."
Raney said that the school’s resistance to Students United in Faith had the side effect of publicizing the group.
"The publicity surrounding my school's decision to deny our club access to campus has had the happy consequence of helping students hear about our club who otherwise would not have heard and they have begun to support the club in even greater numbers," he said.
"I am thrilled that my fellow club members and I can resume doing good for our community."
Publication date: October 14, 2014