5220 - Student Publications


Adoption Date: 10/12/2000
5000 - Students

5220 Student Publications

Students shall enjoy the constitutional right of freedom of expression. They shall have the right to express their views in speech, writing, or through any other medium or form, limited solely by those restrictions imposed on all citizens generally and those specifically applicable to children and youth in a school setting.

The Board of Education encourages student publications not only because they offer an educational activity through which students gain experience in reporting, writing, editing, and understanding responsible journalism, but also because they provide an opportunity for students to express their views and a means of communicating both within and beyond the school community.

All student publications will comply with the rules for responsible journalism. The Board expressly forbids the publication and/or distribution of literature which contains libelous, obscene, profane statements, prejudicial statements, as well as statements which advocate breaking of state and federal laws or school regulations. Expressions of personal opinion must be clearly identified as such, and bear the name of the author. Opportunity for the expression of opinions differing from those of the student publishers must be provided.

In addition, student newspapers and/or publications which are paid for by the school district and/or produced under the direction of a teacher as part of the school curriculum are not considered a public forum. The district may exercise editorial control over the style and content of student speech in school-sponsored publications and activities that are part of the educational curriculum.

Distribution of Literature

The Board recognizes the right of its students to publish or distribute newspapers, magazines and other literature not sanctioned by the district. However, the district has no responsibility to assist students in the publication of such literature, nor does the Board assume any responsibility for any statements published therein.

The Board permits the distribution of non-sanctioned materials within its schools and on school property only after such materials have been submitted for administrative review and approval. The Board directs the Superintendent or his/her designee, in keeping with the requirements of the law, to prepare administrative regulations which establish guidelines for students seeking approval for the distribution of non-school publications.

Policy References:
Hazelwood School District v. Kuhlmeier, 484 US 260, 108 S Ct 562 (1988)
Bethel School District v. Fraser, 478 US 675 (1986)
Tinker v. DesMoines Independent Community School Dist., 393 US 503, (1969) 
Thomas v. Board of Education, Granville Central School Dist., 607 F 2d 1043 (1979) 
Trachtman v. Anker, et al., 563 F 2d 512 (1977) 
Eisner v. Stamford Board of Education, 314 F Supp 832, modf'd. 440 F2d 803 (1971) 
Frasca v. Andrew et al., 463 F Supp 1043 (1979) 
Matter of Beil and Scariati, 26 EDR 109(1986)

Policy Cross References:
 » 4321 - Programs for Students with Disabilities Under the IDEA and New York's Education Law Article 89