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PENDLETON, Ind. — Pendleton Heights High School is being sued. 

Pendleton Heights Gay-Straight Alliance, a student-led organization at the high school, hasn’t been allowed by the principal to publicize its existence on school bulletin boards or on the school’s radio station while other clubs have been able to.

So, the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana has sued the school on PHGSA’s behalf saying the school has, “imposed undue, unequal burdens on the student group.” 

They said that by not allowing PHGSA to advertise to find more members the group has been, “hindered in its purpose as a place of shelter, support, and education, not just for LGBTQ students, but for all Pendleton Heights High School students.”

“This group aims to create an environment that provides support to students, during a time that otherwise might be increasingly difficult for LGBTQ students,” said Kit Malone, advocacy strategist at ACLU of Indiana. “The differential treatment aimed at Pendleton Heights Gay-Straight Alliance by administrators is unwarranted and these students must be treated in the same manner that all other student groups are treated.” 

The lawsuit says that this treatment violates the Equal Acces Act, the First Amendment, and the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.

“Students at Pendleton Heights High School may participate in non-curricular clubs recognized by the school,” said Ken Falk, ACLU of Indiana legal director. “By creating additional hurdles for Pendleton Heights Gay-Straight Alliance such as censoring the group’s promotions and prohibiting fundraising, the school is infringing on these students’ rights.”

This also isn’t the first time issues of the school’s LGBTQ+ acceptance have been brought up. According to the Herald Bulletin, in May three teachers were told to take LGBTQ+ pride flags out of their classrooms.