ALBANY, N.Y. – A federal judge on Tuesday ordered a school to reinstate a 13-year-old boy who was suspended for wearing rosary beads, pending a hearing into whether the suspension violated his civil rights.

Oneida Middle School officials contend Raymond Hosier violated a policy banning gang-related clothing, as rosary beads are sometimes worn as gang symbols. But the seventh-grader, who initially was suspended two weeks ago, says he wears the rosary in memory of his younger brother, who died while clutching it after a bicycle accident.

The American Center for Law and Justice, an offshoot of Pat Robertson’s Christian Broadcasting Network, filed a lawsuit Tuesday, contending the suspension violated the boy’s rights to free speech and religious expression.

 


Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.