By Chris Kieffer/NEMS Daily Journal & Alisha Wilson/The Itawamba County Times
The Itawamba Agricultural High School’s parent-sponsored prom is back on, and it will now be held at the Fulton Country Club, the club’s manager said.
Fulton Country Club manager Stanley Ramey said that the event would be held at the club Friday night.
It had originally been set for the Tupelo Furniture Market but was canceled Monday night, multiple parents confirmed. Parents would not confirm for the Daily Journal or Itawamba County Times why the event was first cancelled.
Lori Byrd, who served on the parent organizing committee that planned the canceled event, told The Clarion-Ledger newspaper it was called off because, “there are a lot of people involved and they don’t want to get sued.”
School board attorney Michele Floyd said that same-sex dates would be allowed at the prom that will be held at the country club.
Parents announced they would put on the prom after the school district relinquished its sponsorship earlier this month. The district announced it would not hold the prom after receiving a letter from the ACLU of Mississippi demanding it allow senior Constance McMillen to attend with her girlfriend and to wear a tuxedo to the dance.
The ACLU filed a preliminary injunction to force the district to sponsor the prom. Senior U.S. District Judge Glen H. Davidson ruled March 23 that the district did not have to sponsor the prom but that it did violate McMillen’s First Amendment rights.
Christine P. Sun, a lawyer with the ACLU who represented McMillen said that when McMillen tried to buy a ticket on Monday to the parent-sponsored prom, she was told that the deadline to buy tickets had passed on Saturday. But a parent told McMillen to leave her phone number and the parent would get a ticket for her, Sun said.
Sun also said that McMillen got a lot of angry text messages Tuesday morning after the prom had been originally canceled.