Ellen DeGeneres

A lesbian high school student in the middle of a battle against her school's prom policy received a $30,000 check toward her college education on The Ellen DeGeneres Show.

DeGeneres presented Constance McMillen with the oversized check on Friday from Tonic.com, a digital media company that describes itself as a group dedicated to promoting the good that happens each day.

McMillen, an 18-year-old student from Mississippi, made headlines when she challenged her school board for its rules that prevent her from bringing her girlfriend to the prom. The school ultimately canceled the April 2 prom after McMillen's request.

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"It's always easy to be quiet, especially when you know somebody might tell you 'no' or it's going to cause a scene," DeGeneres said. "And I love that you're not trying to do anything but go to prom. That's what every kid deserves to go do is to go to prom. It's a big deal."

The American Civil Liberties Union has sued the school on McMillen's behalf, seeking an order for the school to reinstate the prom, and allow McMillen to wear a tuxedo and to bring her girlfriend. A hearing is scheduled for Monday.

A person who answered the phone at the Itawamba County's superintendent's office said no one was available to comment. She declined to give her name.

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