Top 10 rules that govern school authorities over student cyber expression
Top Ten Rules That Govern
School Authority Over Student
Schools can and will adjust to the new
challenges created by…..Students and
the Internet. Students need to know that
school boundaries exist, even on the
Well crafted School Policies ….
• Lay out expectations, define rights and
responsibilities, describe procedures and
detail the remedies available if the policy is
• Policies allow administrators to create a
type of private law that governs the school
• A school with a long standing anti bullying policy
may, based on its findings of an increase in offensive
text messaging and emailing among students, amend
it‟s policy to include a prohibition against cyber
School leaders craft policies they
think are appropriate, publish and
distribute the policies, and require
parents and students to return
signed permission or
acknowledgement. School policies
then become the law of the school.
The following 10 general
principles guiding cyber bullying
situations in schools have
emerged from court precedents.
Rule1: First amendment
provision apply to Public school
The First Amendment
• Students have amendment rights
• They have right to express opinions on
• They also have the right to express them freely ;
don‟t possess unlimited rights!
• Schools have the power and duty to intervene
• School‟s purpose involves more learning than
Rule2: Censorship is
• Student expression reasonably suggests a
substantial disruption to school activities.
Rule 3: Censorship is
• Students expression actually interferes
with Students‟ right to educational benefits
or substantially detracts from the learning
Rule 4: Lewd vulgar or profane
language is inappropriate in a
public educational environment.
• Schools have the authority to prohibit lewd
, offensive and vulgar student expressions
from occurring on campus in public
Rule 5: Regulations may be imposed with
respect to time , place and manner of
• Schools may establish standards to prevent
expressions that are ungrammatical, poorly
written , inadequately researched , biases, or
prejudiced or expressed in an inappropriate
Rule 6: Regulate school
• School sponsored expression include those
created as a part of the school curriculum or a
school sponsored activity.
• School administrators exercise editorial control
over student assignments, school publications and
other school sponsored expressive activities.
Rule 7:Regulate school
sponsored expression on the
basis of any legitimate
• Schools to censor student expression for
legitimate pedagogical purposes.
Rule8: Regulate Off campus
• Only if the sting of the expressions
significantly impacts the school
environment may the school intervene.
• When school activities disrupt, School
should draw a line!
Rule9: Some expressions
may be restricted
• Expressions may be restricted if it is
Reasonably perceived to be inconsistent with
the “Shared values of a civilized social order”
• School‟s obligation is to instill „Values‟ and to
• School meet this when they allow students to
observe freedom of speech
• But school should impart „Boundaries‟
Rule10: Regulation of True
threats and criminal activity
• Schools may restrict student expression that
falls outside of amendment protection
• School need not tolerate criminal activities
• School should decide „True threats‟
• Educational Technology for school leaders
by Lynne Schrum
• Google images
• Yahoo images
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