College grants paper control over content

NORTH CAROLINA — The staff at the student newspaper at Craven Community College will maintain editorial control over their newspaper after the Craven Community College Board of Trustees approved a new policy for the paper on July 19.

The policy specifies that the Communicator staff has control over the newspaper, and the college is released from any liability relating to the paper’s content.

The new policy also creates a nine-person advisory committee made up of the paper’s adviser, two staff members from the newspaper, two from the Student Council, two media representatives and two college faculty members. If the staff and the adviser disagree over publication of an article, they can take the issue to the committee for review, although the committee’s suggestions are not binding.

The paper’s editor is ”encouraged” to submit stories to the adviser before publication. It is not required, however, Communicator Editor in Chief Corey Friedman said.

”It was the best possible outcome,” Friedman said. ”From now on students’ First Amendment rights at Craven Community College will be protected and upheld.”

The implementation of the policy ends the controversy that ensued after the Communicator published a column about sex that the college’s administration claimed was inappropriate. At one point, the college had been in negotiations to give publishing control and oversight of the paper to an outside publishing company, Freedom Communications Inc.

Members of the paper’s staff objected to the plan, and Freedom Communications Inc. decided not to pursue the deal.