Since the mid of the 20th century the first amendment right of the students has been in controversy. In its decision the Supreme Court stated the students not to “shed their constitutional rights to freedom of speech or expression at the schoolhouse gate” on the Tinker vs. des Moines case.
Right to free speech plays an important role to achieve healthy democracy in a free society. New communication sources including internet have expanded the ability to express oneself and share information and participate in social and democratic political processes.
Difference between right of journalist in public and private high school
Thomas Jefferson, “Speech limited is speech lost”, the students must has freedom to speech. The journalists of the school write in the school newspaper or the yearbook on the topics related to school and “even on some of the controversial subjects like conflict of the Vietnam, suppose if the student does so, without any substantially and materially interfering with the requirements of appropriate discipline in the operation of the school and by without colliding the rights of others”. The difference is just that in public school the funds are provided by the government and administered by the faculty but in private high schools the journalist can use different fund sources and are not bounded by the government for its code of conduct.
Public school administrators can censor a student publication
The Journalists of the schools work as a team and collect information and publishing school newspapers. The school papers can be censored if the issue is “reasonably related to legitimate pedagogical concerns”. The papers are allowed to be censored if the school has educational justification for it. The publication must be supervised by the faculty and should be full of knowledge in a particular field either to the students or audiences. It should use school’s name and resources and deemed as school sponsored in order to get censored.
Difference in the rights of college and high school journalists
The college students enjoyed freedom of speech without any restrictions but in 1972 the court declared the same restrictions of the first amendment on the college journalist. Then in 2001 the court again reaffirmed the college journalists to enjoy the first amendment freedom more than the high school. In the sixth circuit some “reasonable” regulations were imposed in the state university. In the seventh amendment the court declared that the college journalists will no more enjoy freedom in administrative censorship than the high school students. Till the 6th circuit the college journalists enjoyed the freedom of censorship unlike the high school students.
Cite relevant case and examples
In 2005 a student named Toni Kay Schott of Redwood Middle school Napa, was taken to the principal’s office because she had not worn the dress code. She either change or stay in the school or she could go back home. She thought nothing was wrong with her dress and went back home, her parents also thought that it was unconstitutional to force her wear the dress: “a denim skirt and socks depicting tigger, a character from winnne the pooh” and sued the school in the court insisting that the students have the right to express them through their clothing. Fredrick sued for the violation of right to free speech .ADF case in which the student was prevented to sing a religious song.