School Law Module Three Reading Reflection Essay

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School Law Module Three Reading Reflection American Public School Law, Chapter 8 – Student Speech and Expression Chapter Eight overviews the freedom of student speech and expression on public school property. The First Amendment provides students with the ability to openly speech and express themselves; however, there are limitations to these rights. Schools must balance the students right to free speech and expression with the need for a safe school that is advantageous for learning. As teachers and administrators, it is important to recognize that freedom of speech and expression is not strictly defined to the spoken word. Students are afforded the freedom to express themselves in what they wear, the style of their hair, etc. So long as this expression does not infringe on the school’s ability to educate the students. Examples of situations that a future administrator should be aware of are: • A student wears a shirt with a political statement on it. o So long as the statement does not contain obscenity, asking them to cover it up violates their First Amendment rights. More importantly, the school cannot allow one political viewpoint to be presented and disallow another. • A student wears a shirt with a beer logo on it. o The school may ask them to change or cover up the shirt because the courts does allow schools to limit certain types of speech (specifically related to drugs and alcohol). • The school may exercise editorial control over a school newspaper

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