45 Miss. L.J. 953 (1974)
Cook v. Hudson: The State's Interest in Integration versus the First Amendment Rights on the Public Schoolteacher

handle is hein.journals/mislj45 and id is 977 raw text is: COMMENTS

COOK V. HUDSON: THE STATE'S INTEREST IN INTEGRA-
TION VERSUS THE FIRST AMENDMENT RIGHTS OF THE
PUBLIC SCHOOLTEACHER
The controversy began when the public school officials of Calhoun
County, Mississippi, refused to rehire three teachers-Mr. Billy Cook,
Mrs. Loula Adams, and Mrs. W. P. Wright-for the 1973-74 school year.
The teachers were denied reemployment for enrolling their children in
a private, all-white academy, in violation of a school board policy requir-
ing children of public schoolteachers to attend the public schools.' The
result was Cook v. Hudson2 an unusual and important decision which
resolved the conflicting demands of the 1st and 14th amendments by
upholding the school board's policy and refusing to reinstate the dis-
missed teachers.
In 1968, effective desegregation had come to the Calhoun County
public school system. As the result of a school desegregation suit, the
public school system of the county, which had previously operated as a
racially distinct dual system, was ordered to convert to a unitary sys-
tem. Geographic zoning of the first three grades was ordered for the
1968-69 school year, with the remaining grades to convert to a unitary
system by the 1969-70 school year.3
At no time prior to the 1968 order had a private school, either
secular or parochial, ever existed in Calhoun County. Within 1 month
of the court's desegregation order, however, Calhoun Academy, a pri-
vate, secular school, was founded.4 The conclusion that Calhoun Acad-
emy was and remains a racially discriminatory institution formed in
the wake of public school desegregation to provide a haven for segre-
gated education5 seems well-founded, even aside from the proximity of
its establishment to the desegregation order. In its almost 6 years of
'The entire policy was:
Prior to the employment of a new teacher, or the reemployment of an existing
teacher, the children of any such teacher, if living in Calhoun County, Missis-
sippi, would be required to attend the public schools of said Calhoun County,
or said teachers would not be employed or reemployed.
Cook v. Hudson, 365 F. Supp. 855, 857 (N.D. Miss. 1973). This statement of school policy
was oral, never being transcribed into the School Board minutes.
1365 F. Supp. 855 (N.D. Miss. 1973).
3United States v. Calhoun County Bd. of Educ., WC 6637 (N.D. Miss., Aug. 9, 1968).
Prior to the 1968 order, nominal desegregation had been achieved under a freedom-of-
choice plan. The failure of freedom-of-choice to eliminate the dual system in Calhoun
County occasioned the comprehensive 1968 order. 365 F. Supp. at 856.
'365 F. Supp. at 856.
'Id. at 857.

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