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Federal Trial Begins in Lawsuit over LGBT Student Club in Leesburg


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Lake County Board officials and students will testify in federal court this week. Photo: Lake County School District.

Lake County Board officials and students will testify in federal court this week. Photo: Lake County School District.

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A club for LGBT students at an Leesburg middle school is at the center of a federal lawsuit. The trial started today over the Lake County School Board’s decision to deny a gay-straight alliance at Carver Middle School.

The Lake County School Board vice-chair Bill Mathias says officials refused to approve the club because it’s not academic.

“I think that our six through eight graders—11 to 13 year olds—need to be focused on academics. This certainly isn’t a club that was targeted or whatever. Any club that is non curricular is no longer a club that is school sponsored.”

The American Civil Liberties Union of Florida calls the denial a violation of students’ rights.

The district denied sponsoring two other clubs, including a Christian sports team.

Lake County Board officials and students will testify in federal court this week.

Editor’s note: An earlier version of this story had the wrong location of the school. It is in Leesburg.


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About Renata Sago

Renata Sago

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