Truth v. Kent School District
Two students sought to form a Bible club at a high school in Kent, Washington. They filed their application with the ASB. With the oversight of the Vice Principal, the ASB denied the club the right to exist as an approved ASB club for two reasons. First, the club’s constitution required its members to sign a statement of faith, which attests to the inerrancy of the Bible. Second, the constitution included a code of conduct based upon Christian values. While any student may attend club meetings and functions, participants must sign a statement of faith to become voting members. The District Court ruled against the club, arguing that the club had no right to discriminate against other non-Christian students.
We subsequently appealed to the Ninth Circuit, but the Ninth Circuit also ruled against Truth Bible Club in a shocking decision, the implications of which go as far as to threaten the right of churches to maintain similar membership qualifications. We consequently asked the entire Ninth Circuit panel of judges to reconsider the ruling. Our request was denied, and a similar ruling was re-issued. We have asked the entire Ninth Circuit panel of judges to reconsider this new opinion, which the Ninth Circuit denied. This case was appealed to the United States Supreme Court and the Court refused to hear it.
This case has now gone back to the District Court and we will be filing a brief arguing that the School District violated the Truth Bible Club’s consitutional rights by permitting other clubs who restrict membership based on gender, but will not permit Truth to restrict membership based on religious belief.