Bad Senators. No bone.
The Senate has approved the ever-changing student clubs bill — now back to its original form — which would allow school officials to ban clubs that threaten “the physical, emotional … and moral well-being of students.”
Sen. Chris Buttars, R-West Jordan, Senate sponsor of the bill, said under the measure schools could deny a club like a Gay Straight Alliance and not be in fear of litigation and legal costs since the Attorney General’s Office would be required to defend the law.
HB236 would also give parents the authority to view material distributed in a club seven days prior to the club meeting and require the school to appoint a faculty adviser to each non-curricular club. It would also require clubs to establish bylaws, a statement of purpose and a name related to that purpose.
State education leaders have opposed the bill, calling it unnecessary, along with Gay-Straight Alliance advocates who fear the bill will incorrectly give schools the idea they can deny an alliance application and not be out of compliance with the federal Equal Access Act.
That act says a school allowing extra-curricular clubs cannot discriminate against students who want to meet based on their religious, political, philosophical beliefs or the content of their speech.
State school leaders also said that many school districts already have club policies that require parental permission, and some said the measure would be micro-managing.