Wednesday, October 01, 2003

Denying use of public building to homeschoolers does not violate First Amendment

In Goulart v. Meadows, the Fourth Circuit in an opinion by District Court Judge Goodwin, joined by Judge Motz, with Judge Niemeyer dissenting in part but concurring in the result, held that a Maryland county did not violate the plaintiff homeschoolers' First Amendment rights by denying them use of a community center pursuant to a county policy against use of the buildings for private educational instruction intended to meet state educational requirements. Judge Niemeyer agreed with the District Court that the First Amendment was not implicated at all by the county's policy, and would not have engaged in the lengthy discussion of whether the county's intrusion on speech rights was justified.

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