Case Summary

(50 points)
Prepare a one-page summary of the court case that has been assigned to you. You can locate the
case in the appropriate reporter system in the law school or on LEXIS, Find Law, or other data
bases. The cases (abridged versions for some) also are available on E310's electronic reserves
through the Education Library. Although you will not be asked to present your case to the class,
feel free to contribute insights you gained from the case when we are addressing that topic.
You are summarizing what the justices said in the case and not giving your analysis of the
decision. Be certain that you summarize the decision of the highest court that has ruled in your
case and not a lower court opinion. Your summary should include the following elements:
CASE NAME AND CITATION (as it appears on the list of cases): This includes the
names of the principal litigants, followed by the volume, reporter, and page on which the
case begins. In parentheses, identify the court and the year of the decision. (If you quote
directly from the decision, be sure to include the page number on which the quote appears.)
ISSUE(S): State the issue or issues identified by the court in question form. Specify the
provision of law that the court is interpreting.
FACTS: State the essential facts leading to the controversy. Be concise, including only
relevant information.
HOLDING: Identify the court's response to the issue or issues involved. Do not couch
the holding in terms of the lower court ruling (e.g., the Supreme Court reversed the
decision of the federal appellate court) unless you clearly state the lower court's holding
under "facts."
RATIONALE: Explain the court's reasoning for its decision. On what legal grounds
(e.g., Fourteenth Amendment Due Process Clause, Title IX of the Education Amendments
of 1972) did the court base its opinion? Identify any judicially created tests (e.g.,
endorsement test under the Establishment Clause) that the court applied in reaching its
DISSENTING/CONCURRING OPINIONS: Include a sentence on two on the
dissenting and/or concurring opinions written by the justices if such opinions are pertinent
to understanding the case.
* Submit two copies of your case summary. Ten points will be deducted for summaries
submitted late, and they will not be accepted more than ten days late.
Selected Cases:
1. West Virginia State Bd. of Educ. v. Barnette, 319 U.S. 624 (1943) (compelled pledge of allegiance to American
2. Epperson v. Arkansas, 393 U.S. 97 (1968) (teaching evolution)
3. Pickering v. Board of Educ., 391 U.S. 563 (1968) (teachers’ expression rights)
4. Tinker v. Des Moines Indep. Community Sch. Dist., 393 U.S. 503 (1969) (students’ expression rights)
5. Board of Regents v. Roth, 408 U.S. 564 (1972) (nonrenewal of nontenured teachers)
6. San Antonio Indep. Sch. Dist. v. Rodriguez, 411 U.S. 1 (1973) (school finance)
7. Goss v. Lopez, 419 U.S. 565 (1975) (students’ due process rights)
8. Board of Educ. of the Hendrick Hudson Central Sch. Dist. v. Rowley, 458 U.S. 176 (1982) (appropriate programs
children with disabilities)
9. Irving Indep. Sch. Dist. v. Tatro, 468 U.S. 883 (1984) (related services for children with disabilities)
10. Wallace v Jaffree, 472 U.S. 38 (1985) (silent prayer statute)
11. Bethel Sch. Dist. No. 403 v Fraser, 478 U.S. 675 (1986) (students’ expression rights)
12. Hazelwood Sch. Dist. v. Kuhlmeier, 484 U.S. 260 (1988) (students’ expression rights)
13. Honig v. Doe, 484 U.S. 305 (1988) (discipline of children with disabilities)
14. Board of Educ. of Westside Community Schs. v. Mergens, 496 U.S. 226 (1990) (Equal Access Act)
15. Miles v. Denver Pub. Schs., 944 F.2d 773 (10th Cir. 1991) (teacher classroom expression)
16. Vernonia Sch. Dist. 47J v. Acton, 515 U.S. 646 (1995) (student drug testing)
17. Agostini v. Felton, 521 U.S. 203 (1997) (providing remedial services in sectarian schools)
18. Gebser v. Lago Vista Indep. Sch. Dist., 524 U.S. 274 (1998) (sexual harassment of students)
19. Boroff v. Van Wert City Bd. of Educ., 220 F.3d 465 (6th Cir. 2000) (student attire)
20. Downs v. Los Angeles Unified Sch. Dist., 228 F.3d 1003 (9th Cir. 2000) (teachers’ expression rights)
21. Good News Club v. Milford Cent. Sch., 533 U.S. 98 (2001) (community religious club using public school facilities)
22. Canady v. Bossier Parish Sch. Bd., 240 F.3d 437 (5th Cir. 2001) (student uniforms)
23. Zelman v. Simmons-Harris, 536 U.S. 639 (2002) (voucher program including religious schools)
24. Board of Educ. v. Earls, 536 U.S. 822 (2002) (student drug testing policy)
25. Owasso Indep. Sch. Dist. v. Falvo, 534 U. S. 426 (2002) (privacy rights involved in peer grading practices)