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Street Law, Inc. and The Supreme Court Historical Society present
Street Law /
Landmark Cases /
Hazelwood v. Kuhlmeier
" . . . educators do not offend the First Amendment by exercising editorial control over the style and content of student speech in school-sponsored expressive activities so long as their actions are reasonably related to legitimate pedagogical concerns." —Justice White, speaking for the majority
Hazelwood East High School Principal Robert Reynolds procedurally reviewed the Spectrum, the school’s student-written newspaper, before publication. In May 1983, he decided to have certain pages pulled because of the sensitive content in two of the articles, and acted quickly to remove them in order to meet the paper’s publication deadline. The journalism students felt that this censorship was a direct violation of their First Amendment rights. The Supreme Court decided that Principal Reynolds had the right to such editorial decisions, as he had “legitimate pedagogical concerns.”
These materials were developed for students of various skill levels, and teachers should choose the level that works best for their students. Answers to the background questions, vocabulary, and activities can be found in the FOR TEACHERS ONLY tab under each case.
* Answers to the background questions, vocabulary, and activities can be found in the FOR TEACHERS ONLY tab under each case.
(Note to teachers: There are a number of web sites listed in the RESOURCES tab. Experiment by developing your own activities that go along with these sites.)
Law Wise Newsletter: Students' Freedom of Expression under the First Amendment (The Kansas Bar Foundation)
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