(May 5, 2015 – Hampton, IA) – Hampton-Dumont Community School District has acknowledged errors in the application of its school club policies in response to Thomas More Society’s demand letter, which was sent in April on behalf of student Isabell Akers and Students for Life of America. The letter charged that Hampton-Dumont High School had unconstitutionally discriminated against Isabell by denying her equal rights with other clubs when she requested to form a Students for Life club. The District is now reviewing both the policies themselves and how the policies apply to each club at the school, in order to bring both into full compliance with the law.
“We are encouraged by the District’s response in stepping up to remedy misapplications of the existing policies, which had resulted in pro-life students not being given the same treatment as other student-led clubs,” said Jocelyn Floyd, Associate Counsel for Thomas More Society. “This situation has given the school administrators an opportunity to clarify their District’s protections for broad, vibrant free speech rights for all students at Hampton-Dumont High School, including pro-life students.”
“We are pleased that, just as soon as the District has completed its revisions to the student club policies, the Students for Life club at Hampton-Dumont High School will be permitted the same opportunities as all other student-led clubs to share their opinions and engage in activities on their school campus,” said Kristan Hawkins, president of Students for Life of America.
Senior Isabell Akers is preparing to graduate and pass the baton to her fellow pro-life students at Hampton-Dumont High School, who are eager to exercise their First Amendment rights with a lively Hampton-Dumont Students for Life club in the fall.