By Debra Cassens Weiss. Female prisoners in Illinois can't sue under the Fourth Amendment for being forced to show their genitals in a training exercise, a federal appeals court has ruled. The Chicago-based 7th U.
So has a diverse, cross-ideological alliance of over a dozen prominent public interest groups, as well a group of leading qualified immunity scholars. The case at issue is I. When I.
A high school in Quebec recently came under fire after 28 students who were taking a math test were strip-searched by teachers. The teacher had asked the students to place their cellphones on her desk during the exam, and when one cell phone went missing, all of the students were called into a room, told to strip, and then searched to see who had taken the phone. In the United States, that would have been a good test in constitutionality—and one that the teachers would have failed.
Justice Anthony M. The procedures endorsed by the majority are forbidden by statute in at least 10 states and are at odds with the policies of federal authorities. According to a supporting brief filed by the American Bar Associationinternational human rights treaties also ban the procedures.
Student search can be a tool for maintaining safe schools, but school administrators must balance students' individual rights with the school community's need for a safe learning environment. The school tragedies in these communities brought the threat to school safety into the public conscience and moved school safety onto the U. Safety threats, once thought to be only an urban problem, are a concern for urban, rural, and suburban areas alike.
The Fourth Amendment protects individuals from unreasonable searches and seizures. This report provides an analysis of the U. Redding, which addressed the constitutionality of a strip search of a year-old middle school student.
Locker searches are always OK. Strip searches can be OK, but only if the school is extremely careful. The Fourth Amendment of the U.
Despite a U. Kaspar, who presented the Impersonating a Peace Officer charge that was made on former Crockett Police Chief Jimmy Fisher, speculated that, because most people know Jimmy Fisher as Chief Fisher, he might not have said he was an officer of the law. Even so, students might have believed him to be an officer and therefore complied with his directives to undress. Kaspar also believed the jury may have been lenient because school administrations believed the student possessed a gun.
Safford Unified School District v. ReddingU. The court also held, however, that because this was not clearly established law prior to the court's decision, the officials involved were shielded from liability by qualified immunity.
While the Fourth Amendment to the U. The safety of students and staff and the need to maintain order to promote learning are important objectives on school campuses. Still, students do not leave their constitutional rights at the schoolhouse door. Schools today are facing issues not imagined when the courts first addressed search and seizures of students and their belongings.