Student Speech Restrictions Upheld by Federal Court Ruling
Michael Leal’s suspension notice

On February 16, a federal court ruled against Michael Leal’s suit, claiming the school district prevented him from practicing his Christian faith, thus upholding the current student speech restrictions.

In October of 2014, Michael Leal, of Cascade High School in Seattle was wrongly suspended for sharing his Christian faith via Bible literature at his school (school administrators called it “disruptive behavior), so he hired Pacific Justice Institute to file a federal law suit claiming his Constitutional rights were violated.

Prior to Leal’s suspension, he was given a “behavior plan,” and asked to signify his agreement with its directives by signing it when he was found distributing Gospel literature in a math class.

The school’s policy states that only literature written by students or school clubs can be distributed and only before and after school at the entrances and exits.

Leal claims through his attorneys:

School administrators violated his rights by limiting his ability to discuss and express his religion. They contend that, by preventing him from promoting his views on Christianity, the school district stopped him from practicing his faith.

Brad Dacus, President of Pacific Justice Institute, commented:

It is deeply troubling to see a school district dig in its heels on a policy that is so clearly unconstitutional. We are eager to vindicate Mr. Leal’s rights and prevent him from being expelled for simply sharing his deeply-held beliefs. We need more high school seniors, not less, who have strong moral convictions and are concerned about their fellow students.

In a press release on February 20, PJI said, “PJI believes the restriction of literature distribution to entrances and exits contradicts the Supreme Court’s famous 1969 Tinker decision that says students do not shed their constitutional rights at the schoolhouse gate.”

Lainie Sloane

Lainie Sloane started her grassroots political activism as a Teen Age Republican (TAR) when she was 14 years old, helping her local College Republicans. In addition to serving on various local and state campaign committees and managing GOP Campaign Headquarters for two presidential elections, Lainie was awarded an Indiana Honorary Indiana Secretary of State for her extraordinary leadership skills and dedication to maintaining our freedoms. After she married Los Angeles native and former entertainer, J.P. Sloane, Lainie worked in management at Sony Pictures, Walt Disney Company, Warner Bros. Animation and assisted in the development and start-up of a retro record label with Dick Clark Productions and Brown Sugar Productions. Recently, her political activities consisted of being on the leadership team for California Assemblyman Tim Donnelly's gubernatorial campaign and co-hosted a Blog Talk Radio Show, Vast Right Wing Conspiracy. She resides in Southern California with her husband, Dr. J.P. Sloane and their daughter, Shannon Sloane, where she is a music publishing business consultant and works as an insurance broker and assists her husband, Dr. Sloane, in the final editing stages of his book, The God of the Bible Is Not Allah, a condensed three-volume course exposing Islam, including select surahs from the Koran in a parallel Bible-Koran format. Lainie can be contacted at and on Twitter @LainieSGP.

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