For Schools

Grades 7-9
Different Treatment for Different Folks?

Is This Legal? Handout

 Instructions: Each of the following situations involves a rule or law requiring one group of people to be treated differently than another group. For each situation, circle "LEGAL" if you believe it is legally permitted or "ILLEGAL" if you believe the situation is not legally permitted. Be prepared to explain the reasons for your decisions.

1. Setting a minimum age for purchasing cigarettes.

 

LEGAL     ILLEGAL
2. Not letting girls play on the high school varsity football team.          

 

LEGAL     ILLEGAL
3. Forbidding smoking in public buildings and areas.              

               

LEGAL     ILLEGAL
4. Prohibiting women in the armed services from serving in combat.   

   

LEGAL     ILLEGAL
5. Establishing public elementary school classrooms that enroll only African-American boys. No others are permitted.

 

LEGAL     ILLEGAL
6. Requiring nonresidents to pay higher tuition at state universities than residents of the state.

 

LEGAL     ILLEGAL
7. Maintaining separate courts for young people and adults.

 

LEGAL     ILLEGAL
8. Barring children with AIDS from attending the public schools.

 

LEGAL     ILLEGAL
9. Hiring only teachers who are Republicans to teach in the
local school district.

 

LEGAL     ILLEGAL

 

10. Specifying that at least 25% of all city construction contracts be awarded to minority-owned and minority-run businesses.

 

LEGAL     ILLEGAL

 

11. Not letting girls become boy scouts.

 

LEGAL     ILLEGAL
12. Letting people who own houses pay less taxes than people
who do not own houses.
LEGAL     ILLEGAL
 

David T. Naylor is Professor of Education in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at the University of Cincinnati. This strategy is adapted from an article that originally appeared in the magazine Update on Law-Related Education (Fall 1991).


>>Different Treatment for Different Folks?
>>Lesson Procedure
>>Handout: Is This Legal?


Law Day For Schools Home | Law Day Lessons Home