Minnesota’s New Voices bill set to advance in House, faces rougher waters in Senate

Emma Yarger, a student journalist at the Echo at St. Louis Park High School testifies in support of the Minnesota New Voices bill moving through the statehouse. Credit: Grace Farley, The Echo

MINNESOTA - A New Voices bill that would protect student journalists in grades six through 12 is making its way to the House floor of the Minnesota Statehouse. The bill, HF1868, was first introduced four years ago. It took a change of party control in the House, and the bill’s author becoming chair of the… Continue reading Minnesota’s New Voices bill set to advance in House, faces rougher waters in Senate

Arkansas bill adding First Amendment protections for college students signed into law

(Left to right) Bill sponsor Rep. Mark Lowery, Henderson State University student D'erra Talley, Arkansas Press Association executive director Ashley Wimberly, HSU student Sara Densmore, HSU adviser Steve Listopad and HSU student Cle'varus Oney. Credit: Aaron Sadler, Arkansas Press Association communications director.

College students in Arkansas just gained new protections against censorship and prior review, thanks to a new law expanding on long-standing student media protections in the state. Lawmakers unanimously passed the “New Voices” bill, HB1231, and Gov. Asa Hutchinson signed it into law on March 8, 2019. The measure builds on the 1995 Arkansas Student… Continue reading Arkansas bill adding First Amendment protections for college students signed into law

PODCAST: New Voices advocates talk struggles and successes

Missouri supporters Mitch Eden, Jack Rintoul, Rep. Deb Lavender, Thora Pearson and Maddie Meyers Photo by: Hannah Hall, Lavender's Chief of Staff
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Cory Dawson: Since 1988, student reporters have lived under a Supreme Court ruling that gives school administrators vast control over what goes into their school’s newspapers. Since then, students, advocates and media advisers have worked to put press freedoms for student journalists into law by passing New Voices laws in 14 states. These laws  protect… Continue reading PODCAST: New Voices advocates talk struggles and successes

A record number of states have introduced New Voices bills in 2019

More bills protecting the First Amendment rights of student journalists are moving through statehouses than ever before, according to a Student Press Law Center tally. The 11 bills are part of a nationwide effort to pass “New Voices” bills in state legislatures, which effectively counteract and clarify the limits of the 1988 Hazelwood School District… Continue reading A record number of states have introduced New Voices bills in 2019

Nebraska Judiciary Committee moves New Voices bill forward

Photo by Julia Holmquist

UPDATE:Feb. 22, 2019Nebraska’s New Voices bill unanimously passes the legislature’s Judiciary Committee Friday, albeit with some changes. Legislative Bill 206 was changed to remove a clause granting immunity to schools that may fear a lawsuit over what the school newspaper publishes. Sen. Adam Morfeld (D-District 46), the bill sponsor, wrote that the Judiciary committee chairman… Continue reading Nebraska Judiciary Committee moves New Voices bill forward

House lawmakers ‘fast-tracking’ Missouri New Voices bill in 2019

Mitch Eden, Jack Rintoul, Rep. Deb Lavender, Thora Pearson, Maddie Meyers Photographer: Hannah Hall, Lavender's Chief of Staff

Feb. 13, 2019 UPDATE: Missouri’s New Voices bill passed a key House committee vote on Wednesday, Feb. 13. HB 743 passed unanimously in executive session, with all twelve committee members supporting it, House General Laws committee Vice Chairman Jered Taylor (R-District 139) said in a text message. The vote moves the bill to the House… Continue reading House lawmakers ‘fast-tracking’ Missouri New Voices bill in 2019

Arkansas high school paper republishes censored story, but prior review and threat to adviser’s job remain

Halle Roberts (middle right) and Jack Williams (right) stand with other staff members of The Herald in Har-Ber High School in Springdale, Ark. Photo courtesy of Jack Williams

ARKANSAS — An Arkansas school district drew national criticism after it apparently broke state law by censoring the paper and halting its publication. The district also announced it would implement prior review. Springdale Public Schools backtracked and allowed online publication of the censored story and editorial, but significant obstacles remain unresolved. The Student Press Law… Continue reading Arkansas high school paper republishes censored story, but prior review and threat to adviser’s job remain

Vermont high school students use New Voices law to win censorship dispute

BHS Register editors speak to the Burlington school board on Thursday. Left to right: Jenna Peterson, Julia Shannon-Grillo, and Halle Newman. VTDigger / Lola Duffort

VERMONT — Student journalists at Burlington High School used the state’s New Voices law to successfully fight back against censorship and prevent the reinstatement of a prior review policy. On Sept. 10, the BHS Register was the first to report  about an investigation by the Vermont Agency of Education focused on the school’s director of guidance, Mario Macias.… Continue reading Vermont high school students use New Voices law to win censorship dispute