Gay student wants to bring boyfriend to prom, hires lawyer


Reporter - Lauren Adams
Photojournalist - Justin Jones

SCOTT COUNTY, Mo, - Prom is two months away for the students at Scott County Central High School, but it is all senior Haley Scherer can think about.

"We've got fountains ordered, we're having food catered there," Haley said of the night.

Haley is excited to say the least about prom. In fact, she has had her dress for weeks.

"This one's not very good because I haven't even had it altered," she says, going through a series of cell phone pictures.

But her classmate, Stacy Dawson has much bigger problems. According to the student handbook at Scott County Central, he is not allowed to bring his boyfriend. Stacy has hired an attorney who sent a letter to the school district on Valentine's Day, threatening legal action. It reads in part his first amendment rights were violated. Stacy, it says, deserves the same rights as other students. 

On a conference call with his lawyer, Stacy explained why it was so important to attend prom and bring his boyfriend of nearly a year.

"I have life long friends at this school, people I'm really close to that I want to be able to share the experience with them and with my boyfriend."

Superintendent Al McFerren has reached out to his grandmother, saying Stacy can bring his boyfriend.

"He was incredibly happy, I was incredibly happy," Stacy says of getting the news Friday.

But until there is something in writing, his lawyer is not backing off. Haley, for her part, hopes it is.  She says she is looking forward to seeing her friend and his boyfriend at the masquerade-themed prom.

"I would love to meet him," she said.

Haley, as it turns out, has two moms and says Stacy's choice of date is not a big deal.

"I always tell people if its not affecting you, don't worry about it."

Stacy's lawyer gave the school a deadline of February 25th before pursuing legal action.  Superintendent Al McFerren says he is working to change the policy.