Good News for New Jersey school

, Mathew D. Staver, Leave a comment

~ The Carteret School District is now allowing a Good News
Club to meet at the Minue Elementary School after Liberty Counsel
sent a letter to the District demanding equal access to the school
gymnasium after school. Good News Clubs are sponsored by Child Evangelism
Fellowship (CEF), an international non-profit organization which sponsors
Good News Clubs in all 50 states and in 156 countries.

Wojtko, the state coordinator for Child Evangelism Fellowship of New
Jersey, Inc., works with clubs at elementary schools all over the
state. The building manager initially approved CEF’s use of
the facilities, but Principal Cheryl Bolinger blocked the meetings
when she learned that the Good News Club teaches morals and character
development from a Biblical perspective. Bolinger instructed Wojtko
not to recruit children to attend the free meetings and refused to
allow fliers to be sent home with parents to inform them about the
Club. Then Bolinger informed Wojtko that CEF could not use the school
facilities, even though CEF paid the facility use fee.

Counsel sent a demand letter to the district superintendent warning
that discriminatory treatment is unconstitutional. The school previously
allowed a karate club to use the gymnasium after school. Other after-school
student enrichment programs have used school facilities and the District
distributed their fliers. The District is obliged to permit Good News
Clubs equal access to its facilities and equal treatment. After receiving
the demand letter, the school district’s attorney informed Liberty
Counsel that CEF can hold club meetings and distribute fliers to recruit

United States Supreme Court has already ruled that Good News Clubs
must have the same access to school facilities as other after-school
programs. A school cannot reject CEF’s use of facilities because
of its religious nature. Federal appeals courts have confirmed that
equal treatment specifically includes the right to have literature
distributed on the same terms and conditions as other groups.