Breaking down yearbook censorship in 2022

Three yearbooks stacked on a desk
Photo by: Stilfehler (CC 4.0 SA / Wikimedia Commons)

It's hard to overstate the importance of yearbooks as a form of student journalism. Yearbooks give students a platform to capture what their lives have been like throughout an academic year — a function that's even more crucial in the current moment, where students are living through so many challenging national and global circumstances. Yearbooks… Continue reading Breaking down yearbook censorship in 2022

SPLC calls on Superintendent at Bigelow High School to reprint censored yearbook pages with an apology

On Friday, August 13, SPLC executive director Hadar Harris sent a letter to East End School District (Arkansas) Superintendent Heidi Wilson asking that she reprint pages which had been ripped from the Bigelow High School yearbook and distribute them to the full school community. Harris further asked that the Superintendent attach a formal written apology… Continue reading SPLC calls on Superintendent at Bigelow High School to reprint censored yearbook pages with an apology

Scholastic journalism organizations support essential coverage of Black Lives Matter movement

white logo saying SPLC and Student Press Law Center on a bright blue background

A joint statement from the Student Press Law Center, Journalism Education Association and National Scholastic Press Association: Faced with unprecedented challenges this year, student journalists across the country have demonstrated remarkable fidelity in practicing the journalistic process. As professional news organizations model daily, reporting on newsworthy events is the duty of any media outlet. Scholastic… Continue reading Scholastic journalism organizations support essential coverage of Black Lives Matter movement

Censorship of Student Journalists Persists Despite their Essential Role Reporting on COVID, Protests, Racial Justice and Elections, New White Paper Finds

white logo saying SPLC and Student Press Law Center on a bright blue background

Contact: Hadar Harris, Executive DirectorStudent Press Law Center(202) 549-6316 / hharris@splc.org Student Journalists Celebrate 3rd Annual Student Press Freedom Day on Feb. 26  Washington, D.C. — In anticipation of the 3rd annual Student Press Freedom Day on Friday, Feb. 26th, the Student Press Law Center released a white paper today detailing a continuing pattern of censorship of student journalists by… Continue reading Censorship of Student Journalists Persists Despite their Essential Role Reporting on COVID, Protests, Racial Justice and Elections, New White Paper Finds

Can my public school administration require us to cover a story in the yearbook?

Paper cut outs of question marks strewn around a desk next to a hand holing a pen

Every week, Student Press Law Center attorneys answer a frequently asked question about student media law in “Legal Question of the Week.” Q: Can my public school administration require us to cover a story in the yearbook? A: Generally no. In addition to protecting one’s right to speak, the important flip-side to the First Amendment is… Continue reading Can my public school administration require us to cover a story in the yearbook?

Can we use photos of students on our school’s “do not picture” list?

Q: Our school has a group of students on a “do not picture” list because parents did not approve photo releases. Does our publication have to cut out any photographs these students may appear in?  A: Legally, the answer is probably no. The “do not picture list” applies to official publications of the school, and the… Continue reading Can we use photos of students on our school’s “do not picture” list?