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Tags: appeals | court | maryland | lgbtq | books | schools

Court Rejects Md. Parents' Bid to Pull Kids From LGBTQ Lessons

By    |   Friday, 17 May 2024 09:28 PM EDT

A federal appeals court ruled that the largest school district in Maryland does not have to afford parents the opportunity to opt-out their elementary school-age children from LGBTQ lessons.

The 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Wednesday affirmed a lower court decision that parents in Montgomery County did not make their case for religious objection against the teaching of LGBTQ lessons to their children. The ruling was 2-1.

Three sets of parents and a parents rights organization filed suit against Montgomery County Public Schools after the district said it would no longer allow parents to pull their kids from reading LGBTQ-inclusive books and accompanying school instruction.

A federal judge in August ruled that the parents did not make their case and the 4th Circuit in Richmond, Virginia, agreed.

"We take no view on whether the Parents will be able to present evidence sufficient to support any of their various theories once they have the opportunity to develop a record as to the circumstances surrounding the Board's decision and how the challenged texts are actually being used in schools," wrote U.S. Circuit Judge G. Steven Agee, appointed by former President George W. Bush, for the majority.

"At this early stage, however, given the Parents' broad claims, the very high burden required to obtain a preliminary injunction, and the scant record before us, we are constrained to affirm the district court’s order denying a preliminary injunction," Agee wrote.

Circuit Judge A. Marvin Quattlebaum Jr. wrote in the dissent that blocking parents' opt-out ability burdened them with "the choice of either compromising their religious beliefs or foregoing a public education for their children."

"The board's refusal to grant the parents' requests for religious opt-outs to instruction with the books the board required be used to promote diversity and inclusivity to the LGBTQ+ community forces the parents to make a choice — either adhere to their faith or receive a free public education for their children. They cannot do both," wrote Quattlebaum, a Donald Trump appointee.

Lawyers for the Christian, Muslim, and Jewish parents vowed to appeal.

"The court just told thousands of Maryland parents they have no say in what their children are taught in public schools," Eric Baxter, vice president and senior counsel at the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, said in a statement to The Hill.

"That runs contrary to the First Amendment, Maryland law, the School Board's own policies, and basic human decency."

Mark Swanson

Mark Swanson, a Newsmax writer and editor, has nearly three decades of experience covering news, culture and politics.

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.


US
A federal appeals court ruled that the largest school district in Maryland does not have to afford parents the opportunity to opt-out their elementary school-age children from LGBTQ lessons.
appeals, court, maryland, lgbtq, books, schools
404
2024-28-17
Friday, 17 May 2024 09:28 PM
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