Har­vard de­fends its new pol­icy on fra­ter­ni­ties TO DO TO­DAY

The Day - - OBITUARIES - By PA­TRI­CIA HUR­TADO Owen and Mo­ley Ó Súil­leab­háin Mahjong Group Chris­tian Med­i­ta­tion Sup­per Book Club Savoy Fic­tion Book Club Com­mu­nity Craft­ing Mon­day Night @ the Movies Spec­u­la­tive Fic­tion Book Dis­cus­sion All Ages Drop-In Sto­ry­time Ba­bies & Books Tod­dle

Har­vard Uni­ver­sity has brought its le­gal fire­power to bear against fra­ter­ni­ties, soror­i­ties and other sin­gle-sex clubs su­ing to keep their role as havens of so­cial life at the school.

The col­lege’s new pol­icy on sin­gle-sex so­cial clubs — en­dorsed by for­mer Pres­i­dent Drew Faust, the first woman to lead the school — doesn’t ban them. But the rules, which cover the in­com­ing Class of 2021, pro­vide a pow­er­ful dis­in­cen­tive to join­ing the off-cam­pus or­ga­ni­za­tions, bar­ring mem­bers from lead­ing sports teams and re­ceiv­ing the school’s en­dorse­ment for prizes such as the Rhodes and Mar­shall schol­ar­ships.

On Fri­day, the school asked state and fed­eral judges to dis­miss two law­suits, filed in fed­eral and state courts in Mas­sachusetts in De­cem­ber, that claim the pol­icy dis­crim­i­nates against the clubs on the ba­sis of sex and vi­o­lates stu­dents’ free­dom of as­so­ci­a­tion.

Har­vard says the rules are “law­ful and wholly sex-neu­tral” and that out­side groups like the Greek clubs have no right to im­pose their cul­ture on the school. It ar­gues that the claims of gen­der dis­crim­i­na­tion are false and have no le­gal foun­da­tion, and that the plain­tiffs can’t show that any stu­dent was harmed.

“Har­vard con­trols its own re­sources and en­dorse­ments, and stu­dents pre­serve the right to join or­ga­ni­za­tions of their own choos­ing,” the school said.

— 7:30 p.m., Katharine Hep­burn Cul­tural Arts Cen­ter, 300 Main St., Old Say­brook; $35; 1-877-503-1286.

— 12:30 p.m., Salem Free Pub­lic Li­brary, 264 Hart­ford Road; free; (860) 859-1130.

— 5:15 p.m., Hark­ness Chapel, Con­necti­cut Col­lege, 270 Mo­he­gan Ave., New London; free; (860) 625-0294.

— 5:30 p.m., Pub­lic Li­brary of New London, 63 Hunt­ing­ton St.; “What Alice For­got” by Lianne Mo­ri­arty; free; (860) 447-1411.

— 5:30 p.m., Savoy Book­shop and Cafe, 10 Canal St., West­erly; “In the Midst of Win­ter” by Is­abel Al­lende; free; (401) 213-3901.

— 6 p.m., Bill Me­mo­rial Li­brary, 240 Mon­u­ment St., Gro­ton; meetup for adults to work on craft projects; free; (860) 445-0392.

— 6 p.m., Water­ford Pub­lic Li­brary, 49 Rope Ferry Road; free; (860) 444-5805.

— 7 p.m., Water­ford Pub­lic Li­brary, 49 Rope Ferry Road; “Col­lected Sto­ries” by Jorge Luis Borges; free; (860) 444-5805.

— 10 a.m., East Lyme Pub­lic Li­brary, 39 So­ci­ety Road; free; (860) 739-6926.

— 10 a.m., Gro­ton Pub­lic Li­brary, 52 New­town Road; for in­fants through 24 months with a care­giver; lim­ited seat­ing; free; (860) 441-6750.

— 10 and 11 a.m., Water­ford Pub­lic Li­brary, 49 Rope Ferry Road; for ages 18-36 months with a care­giver; free; (860) 4445805.

— 1-3 p.m., Gro­ton Pub­lic Li­brary, 52 New­town Road; Set­tlers of Catan games for home­school fam­i­lies; free; (860) 4416750.

— 5-7 p.m., Cra­gin Me­mo­rial Li­brary, 8 Lin­wood Ave., Colch­ester; for all ages with an adult; free; (860) 537-5752.

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