Court grants Sophie B. Wright students right to participate in graduation, but too late for ceremony

Court grants Sophie B. Wright students right to participate in graduation, but too late for ceremony
Sophie B. Wright students participated in a senior prank that ended with punishment - including losing the privilege to walk in graduation. (Source: WVUE)

NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - The Orleans Parish Civil District Court ruled that at least six students who participated in a senior prank at Sophie B. Wright High School could participate in this morning’s graduation.

The ruling came down Monday morning after the graduation ceremony had begun. According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, it was too late for the students to participate.

“We asked the court in New Orleans to issue an injunction to allow a group of students from Sophie B. Wright Charter School to participate in their high school graduation—an injunction that was granted this morning. The court’s decision is a welcome reprieve from the kinds of widespread and arbitrary school discipline practices that violate students’ due process rights,” Victor Jones, senior supervising attorney for the SPLC, said.

Jones said there was a due process violation placed upon the students.

“Though they missed this morning, they know they had a right to be there,” he said.

This comes after numerous students participated in a senior prank that involved water guns on April 5. School administrators said the prank caused at least two people to slip in water.

Students admitted they were warned not to participate in the prank but some said the punishment doesn’t fit the crime. Parents argued they waited their whole lives to watch their children walk across the stage.

Copyright 2019 WVUE. All rights reserved.