NEWS & ANALYSIS

Supreme Court Sides with High School Cheerleader in Free Speech Case


On Wednesday, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of a former high school cheerleader who was punished by her school for a social media post made off of school grounds. 

In an 8 to 1 decision, the court ruled that the Pennsylvania public school wrongly suspended Brandi Levy, a 14-year-old freshman who expressed anger and disappointment on Snapchat when she didn’t make the varsity cheerleading team. 

As reported by Just the News, Levi’s post on the popular social media platform boasted a series of curse words and showed her raising the middle finger. However, she was not at school when she made the post. 

If you aren’t familiar with Snapchat, once you send a post to a recipient, they may view it for up to 10 seconds before it disappears. If you send a post to your story, anyone on your friends list can view it for up to 24 hours before it disappears. 

Following her post, Levi was suspended from cheerleading activities for a year. 

In the court’s opinion, Justice Stephen Breyer argued that the suspension violated the student’s First Amendment Rights. 

But, the justices did not foreclose schools from disciplining students for what they say off campus.