A federal lawsuit has been filed in Cincinnati on behalf of a gay student who says his high school is violating his freedom of expression rights by prohibiting him from wearing a T-shirt urging tolerance of gay students. Maverick Couch's mother filed the lawsuit Tuesday against Wayne Local School District and its high school principal. The lawsuit says Couch, a junior, was threatened with suspension if he wears the shirt bearing the message "Jesus Is Not a Homophobe." The lawsuit says school officials told him the shirt is sexual in nature and inappropriate at school.
A compromise has been struck between sponsors of an Ohio bill that would require students in grades 4-12 be taught the original texts of the state and U.S. constitutions, the Declaration of Independence and other documents.
Different versions of the bill passed both Republican-led chambers of the state Legislature last year. But the Senate in January rejected the House changes to the bill. Lawmakers have been working out technical differences in a conference committee.
The latest state data show four in 10 Ohio high school graduates need at least one remedial English, math or science course when they get to college. Gov. John Kasich wants to shrink that number, so state higher education officials are working to set new statewide college readiness standards.
The budget Kasich signed last year gave institutions until the end of 2012 to identify the knowledge students need to be prepared for college-level coursework. It requires trustees to adopt the new standards by Dec. 31 and develop tests to go with them.