CA School District Accused of Prohibiting Christian Student Club from Meeting on School Property

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A California school district is being accused of wrongfully prohibiting a Christian student club from meeting at a local elementary school.

The student club, Child Evangelism Fellowship, says the Hayward Unified School District allegedly rejected multiple requests from the Good News Club chapter to meet at Fairview Elementary School.

A Hayward Unified School District spokesperson told The Christian Post that school officials “are investigating this matter and have no comment at this time.”

Religious Liberty law firm Liberty Counsel has sent a letter to HUSD Superintendent Jason Reimann asking that the school district “immediately approve CEF’s renewed facilities use request to hold a Good News Club after school on campus at Fairview Elementary School.”

“Prior to COVID-19, a Good News Club was held for numerous years immediately after school at Fairview Elementary,” the legal group said in their letter.

“The District permits other similarly-situated groups to meet directly after school at multiple locations, including Girl Scouts … and Girls on the Run,” the letter continued.

Liberty Counsel Founder and Chairman Mat Staver asserted in a statement that the Good News Club is entitled to “equal access” to public school campuses.

“Equal access means equal treatment, including the use of on-campus facilities, fee waivers, time of meetings, and announcements. Liberty Counsel will work to ensure this happens.”

In 2001, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled 6-3 in a case, saying that public schools cannot ban Good News Clubs from meeting on school property after class hours just because the club is Christian.

The California case isn’t the first case to have come up since the Supreme Court ruling. Earlier this year, Liberty Counsel filed a lawsuit on behalf of a Good News Club chapter against the Providence Public School District in Rhode Island.

The lawsuit said the Rhode Island school district had denied the Good News Club access to public schools for meetings.

In July, the school district agreed to a consent order that allowed the club to meet on district properties.

Photo courtesy: Mche Lee/Unsplash

Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Dallas, Texas. She has covered news for since 2014. She has also contributed to The Houston Chronicle, U.S. News and World Report and She blogs at The Migraine Runner.

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