S: Ferrell V. Dallas ISD
FC: Ferrell v. Dallas ISD 1966 | by Kelly Brubaker and Bryan Bailey
1: Table of Contents | Background.......................................................pages 1-5 Case Information...................................pages 6-11 Supreme Court.............................................pages 12-13 Aftermath............................................................pages 14-17 Works Cited.....................................................pages 18-19
2: Three boys involved in the 1966 case were Phil Ferrell, Steve Webb, and Paul Jarvis from W.W. Samuel High School in Dallas, Texas. The boys were all involved in a rock band named Sounds Unlimited. | Background
3: The problem came when the boys signed a contract for their band. The contract required the boys to have long hair, similar to the Beatles, and high schools had an issue with it.
4: After trying to find a high school to attend, the boys went back to W.W. Samuel High School again. Principal W.S. Lanham denied them admission and in response, the boys wrote the song "Keep Your Hands Off It" and recorded it that night. | The boys' next action was to sue to the federal court. Because the boys' were not 18 yet, their parents had to sue for them and then their long battle began.
5: 14th Amendment: no denial to any person the equal protection of the law Civil Rights Act 1964: outlawed major forms of discrimination | Precedent, or a decision that serves as justification for another similar situation, was used in this case for the following: Plessy v. Ferguson (1896): separate but equal is constitutional & Brown v. Board of Education (1954): ruled that separation is unconstitutional | Laws involved
6: case information | Attorneys were hired for the boys and William M. Taylor judged the hearings. Hearings started in district court September of 1966. Once hearings began, the judge decided to hear all evidence before making his decision.
7: Boys' Side | Principal's Side | The boys: Phillip Ferrell Paul Jarvis Stephen Webb The Boys' Attorneys: Attorney Herbert L. Hooks Attorney Dan Gibbs | The Defendants: W.S. Lanham-principal W.T. White-district superintendent Dallas Independent School District-public school system including W.W. Samuel High School The Defense Attorneys: Attorney Franklin L. Spafford Attorney Warren Whitham
8: What's the issue? | Is the hairstyle a distraction? | Is it each principals' discretion of hair length? | Is the hairstyle becoming common enough to not be “unusual?” | Is the importance of their hair to their band popularity enough to let them stay in school?
9: Appearances and witnesses came to court to testify for both defendants. Other students with similar haircuts to Paul, Steve, and Phil's claimed they have never received harassment or caused a distraction with their hair. Hair is a freedom of expression and they felt they were free to express. On the principals' side, a supporter claimed that it is up to each principal to decide what was acceptable.
10: More hearings and witnesses came to court, and then it was time for the judge to decide. The judge ruled that the boys were denied temporary injunction, or preserving the status quo during trial. | He also decided that he would not force the principal to admit the boys into his school because he believed that the head adults of the school should decide how education is offered.
11: Next step was the Federal Court of Appeals because the boys felt the judge abused his discretion. The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) provided some support to the boys in this court because they felt the boys deserved schooling. The boys claimed their hair was protected under the First Amendment so being forced to cut it would be unconstitutional. A hearing was requested, but denied so the final move was to appeal to the Supreme Court.
12: Supreme Court | A writ of certiorari was filed on June 1, 1968, for the Supreme Court. But four months later the Supreme Court denied the hearing of their case.
13: One of the justices of the Supreme Court, William O. Douglas, did not agree with the courts' denial of the case. In response, he wrote a powerful essay for his fellow justices to try to get them to hear the case. | He used the Constitution for support; claiming that it stated each person can choose how they look. Unfortunately, his essay did not win the other justices over, so the case ended there.
14: Records show that only Steve Webb graduated high school and that their music group did not end up being very successful. | A guide for public school principals was created after this court case that said they could not keep students out of their school for hairstyles because the courts would not defend them unless the student(s) were harmful or a distraction. | After math
15: The Harvard Law Review mentioned their court case in reference to how expelling students on hairstyles and not behavior is wrong. | Also, the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) decided in 1970 to support students’ freedom of expression in school, including dress and hair.
16: Ferrell v. Dallas I.S.D. was mentioned in the big education case of Tinker v. Des Moines in 1969. | This case had to deal with students’ armbands in school in protest of the Vietnam War. Ferrell v. Dallas ISD was brought up as a “Freedom of Expression” case and how the freedom does not exist if it can only be expressed in certain areas of life.
17: Affects from the case can be small too. In Mandeville, LA, and Henry County, GA, there were references to this case in protests about how long boys’ hair can be. | In Texas after more similar issues came up, a law was created that would limit the punishment that a school could impose on long-haired students; but the law did not pass.
18: Ferrell v. Dallas ISD. 392 U.S. 1-15. Supreme Court of the US. 1968. OpenJurist.org. N.p., n.d. Web. 11 Mar. 2011.
19: Images: gothamist.com (page front cover) http://www.miwd.uscourts.gov/COURTROOM%20TECH/judge_bell's_courtroom.htm (page front cover) http://arstechnica.com/gaming/news/2008/05/ps2-wii-rock-band-to-get-new-song-packs-on-july-15.ars (page front cover) asianhairstylesformen.blogspot.com (page front cover) http://openlibrary.org/books/OL682255M/Ferrell_v._Dallas_I.S.D. (page 1,2,6) http://www.startrekanimated.com/ys_beatles_cartoon.html (page 3) cartoonwatcher.com (page 4) http://www.wwsamuell.com/ (page 10) http://aclusaz.org/ (page 11) corbisimages.com (page 12) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_O._Douglas (page 13) http://www.einet.net/review/11534-290466/Harvard_Law_Review_Harvard_Law_Review_Home_Page.htm (page 15) http://ericgzimalowski.com/affiliates.html (page 15) http://hoopniks.com/georgia-tech-adds-second-2011-recruit-bobby-parks (page 17)