Provo School Board Approves Gay-Straight Club

Provo School Board Approves Gay-Straight Club

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(KSL News) -- The Provo School District has approved the application for a new, controversial club.

Some students at Provo High want to start a gay-straight club. It will be the first of its kind in Utah County.

However, the district says it wants the Utah Attorney General's Office to review the application.

**Earlier**Sam Penrod Reporting

A community group will protest before the Provo school board tonight, asking that a gay-straight club be prohibited at Provo High School.

The school district says it can't discriminate against one club, but then allow another. If approved tonight, the gay-straight alliance at Provo High would be the first such club in Utah County. But there is plenty of opposition to it.

At Provo High School there are several school clubs, such as FFA and the science club. Others, considered non-curricular clubs, such as the dance and chess club, are also a part of the school. Now a few students have applied for a gay-straight alliance club.

Greg Hudnall, Spokesman, Provo School District: "This was not initiated by the principal or the superintendent or by the school district. This was a group of students that approached the administration to see if they could have a club."

The district says while the gay-straight club may be allowed, that no school club can promote a gay lifestyle.

Greg Hudnall, Spokesman, Provo School District: "They can be a club that teaches tolerance and my understanding according to the principal, the individuals have met and talked about how they can teach others about better understanding and tolerance of each other. They are not allowed to promote the gay lifestyle."

But a group of citizens calling themselves the 'Standard of Liberty Foundation' plans to challenge the school board about allowing such a club.

Steve Graham, Standard of Liberty Foundation: "The school board has a responsibility to protect the physical, emotional, mental and moral health of their students; and the gay straight alliance clubs do not protect that, people end up being recruited into homosexuality."

School officials say the precedent has already been set, that if they deny the gay straight alliance, all non-curricular clubs would have to be eliminated.

Steve Graham, Standard of Liberty Foundation: "We think this issue is bigger than Provo High; we think this issue has to do with our entire community, our state and it involves the entire nation."

The school board has the option of voting on the club issue tonight, or postponing a decision until later. The board meeting begins tonight at 7:00, at the Provo School District offices.

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