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by parents of high school seniors and juniors and will be held at the Tupelo Furniture Market in
Tupelo, Mississippi. There is no constitutional issue stated, nor is anycognizable constitutional right
of Plaintiff implicated by the Board of Education’s decision to withdraw sponsorship of the school
prom. Significantly, the question of whether or not the Plaintiff will be allowed to bring a same-sex
date to a school-sponsored prom is not proper for injunctive relief and is alternatively barred under
the doctrine of mootness.
II. SCHOOL SPONSORSHIP
The Plaintiff argues that the District has closed an available public forum. This is not the
case. The District has a content neutral facility use policy. (See Board Policy KG at Exhibit “D”).
A social event for the juniors and seniors has been scheduled elsewhere, namely, at the Tupelo
Furniture Market and is sponsored by their parents. No facility use request has been made to the
District. This is an issue of withdrawal of school sponsorship, nothing more. In fact, for at least the
past four years, the Defendant Board has debated and discussed the matter of withdrawing its
sponsorship of the annual prom based primarily on concerns over potential liability exposure.
Potential Liability Exposure
The potential exposure of a school district to damages arising from disruption and private
“superintendents, principals and teachers shall hold the pupils to strict account for disorderlyconduct
at school, on the way to and from school, on the playgrounds, and during recess.” Miss. Code Ann.
§37-9-301 (k) provides school boards with the authority and duty to “authorize the use of the school
buildings and grounds for the holding of public meetings and gatherings of the people under such
regulations as may be prescribed by said board.” These have historically been questions of state
1Pearl Pub. Sch. Dist. v. Groner, 784 So. 2d 911 (Miss. 2001)(Claim against a school district for injuries sustained in a fight that occurred during a school sponsored sporting event.)