School affirms speech rights

TEXAS ' A student who sued his school district after he was scolded for writing a letter to the editor of the local paper has agreed to an out-of-court settlement.

An agreement was reached after Crosbyton High School student Justin Latimer, his parents, school officials and their lawyers met in December.

Student senate tells paper to be ‘gentlemanly’

INDIANA ' A conservative magazine at Wabash College lost its funding and its standing as a recognized student organization in November after the student senate said its content was 'ungentlemanly.' One month later, the senate agreed to re-instate the magazine's funding, a move which was sought by student editors and First Amendment advocates.

The Wabash Commentary was still placed on probation during the Dec.

Schools watch Web expression

As high school students grow more Internet savvy, the Web is playing a bigger role as an avenue for student free expression.

Administrators are striving to be more watchful for criticism or threats posted online by their students, disciplining those who may cross the line and sometimes ending up in court (See COURTS, page 17).

A number of incidents around the country indicate trends in student Web activities and how administrators are reacting.

'Although courts have given school officials broad authority to regulate and punish students' expression while they are in school, teachers and administrators need to recognize that the First Amendment limits their authority to play parent when the students are home,' said Kim Watterson, an attorney working for the American Civil Liberties Union of greater Pittsburgh.