Cinco de Mayo protest at Morgan Hill school remains calm

Cinco de Mayo protest-vigil

MORGAN HILL, Calif. - A planned protest at Live Oak High School in Morgan Hill was fairly quiet as of early Monday afternoon.

On Sunday, the Morgan Hill Police Department said it was stepping up patrols amid talks of a protest at the school on Cinco de Mayo.

The protest comes after several families in Morgan Hill sued the school district after a group of students were told to turn their American flag T-shirts inside out or go home in 2010. The parents claimed the students' first amendment rights were violated, but the court ruled that school officials were merely trying to mitigate any potential violence.

A federal appeals court upheld that decision in April. In their decision, the court cited the fact that Live Oak High School had had a history of violence among students, some gang-related and some drawn along racial lines. An altercation between white and Mexican students occurred on May 5, 2009; some of the students involved in that incident had been wearing American flag T-shirts.

"School officials' actions were tailored to avert violence and focused on student safety, in at least two ways," the justices of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit wrote in their affirmance. "Both the specific events events of May 5, 2010, and the pattern of which those events were a part made it reasonable for school officials to proceed as though the threat of a potentially violent disturbance was real."

The entire appellate decision can be read here.

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