Street Law, Inc. and The Supreme Court Historical Society present

Landmark Cases of the U.S. Supreme Court

Street Law /

Real World Case Study: Censorship of a Student-Produced Television Show

Introduction

Should the policy that applies to a school's print media also apply to its broadcast media? Why or why not?

Directions
  1. Read the article Student Press Protests Policy.
  2. Identify the following:
    • Facts of the case
    • Issue(s)
    • Arguments on both sides
  3. Look at Hazelwood's Key Excerpts from the Majority Opinion.
  4. If you were the students at Montgomery Blair High School, which arguments would you advance when presenting your case to the Board of Education? Why?
  5. If you were the officials at the education channel, which arguments would you advance when presenting your case to the Board of Education? Why?
  6. Read the articles Commission Works on Electronic Media Policy and Television Policy Finally Adopted at Blair High School. What was the county's final decision? Evaluate that decision.
  7. What impact will the decision have on future programming in Montgomery County?
After Effects

The school's principal, Phillip F. Gainous, was given the Courage in Student Journalism Award by the Newseum for his role in supporting students' First Amendment rights.

Application

Read the article Story on Gay Teen Life Sparks Controversy.

  1. If you were the students, how would you make your case to the existing board?
  2. If you were on the board, what guidelines would you recommend?
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