Supreme Court rules on free speech, cheerleader’s Snapchat profanity


In this Nov. 4, 2020 file photo, The Supreme Court is seen in Washington. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

(ABC4) – The Supreme Court has announced a ruling in a free speech case involving a school and a cheerleader’s profanity-ladened Snapchat post.

Four years ago, then 14-year-old Brandi Levy posted to the popular social media app, Snapchat, writing in part, “F——— school f——— softball f——— cheer f——— everything” in a post that also contained a photo in which she and a classmate raised their middle fingers.

The cheerleader’s coaches saw the post, and the school accused her of breaking one of its codes of conduct, suspending her from the team for a year. Her parents filed a federal lawsuit, which made its way to the Supreme Court.

On Wednesday, the justices ruled in the case, which impacts how schools can enforce rules of conduct on social media.

According to ABC News, the court held that “While public schools may have a special interest in regulating some off-campus student speech, the special interests offered by the school are not sufficient to overcome B. L.’s interest in free expression in this case.”

The ruling was 8-1, with only Justice Clarence Thomas dissenting.

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