Law and ethics standards are the foundation upon which all scholastic journalism programs are built. Therefore, the Commission has determined that passing the law and ethics questions is essential. Candidates must score 75 percent or higher on the law and ethics questions—in both multiple choice and short answer sections—to pass. Your cumulative score must also be 75 percent or higher to earn Certification. If you don’t pass the law and ethics part but score well on everything else, you may take an alternate version of the law and ethics questions within one year for a small administrative fee. You will not have to retake the other parts of the test if you earned a 75 percent or higher in those areas.
These are the important court cases. What’s most important is what they mean to today’s journalism educators.
Although there are 9 areas of unprotected speech, these five are the most troublesome for those in scholastic journalism.
CertificationGet Commission www.jea.orgCertified! Law & Ethics Candace Perkins Bowen, San Antonio 2012
JEA standards• 1A.4. A solid foundation in law and ethics as it applies to scholastic media, including First Amendment-related rights and responsibilities.• 1A.5. Law and ethics as it relates to scholastic media and its importance in practice. • Court cases • Legal definitions • Ethical frameworks
The basicsCourt cases that relate to student media: • Tinker v. Des Moines Independent Community School District • Bethel School District v. Fraser • Hazelwood School District v. Kuhlmeier • Morse v. Frederick (Bong Hits) • Yeo v. Town of Lexington (ads) • Dean v. Utica Community Schools
The basicsDefinitions of unprotected speech • Libel • Copyright • Obscenity • Disruption • Invasion of privacy
The basicsOther important definitions • Censorship • Prior review • First Amendment • Cybermedia legal issues • Protecting sources • Access • Sunshine and open meeting laws • FOIA
The basics• Ethical issues • Law asks, “Could we? • Ethics asks, “Should we?”• Balanced coverage• What’s necessary to cover the topic?• Biases and slants• The need for transparency• Anonymous sources
Where to look Student Press Law Center <www.splc.org> Law of the Student Press (3rd edition) JEA’s Scholastic Press Rights Commission <jeapressrights.org> JEA’s Scholastic Press Rights Commission blog <jeasprc.org>
Getting answers contact me: firstname.lastname@example.org commission chair Kim Green: kgreenmje@GMAIL.COM Press Rights commission chair John Bowen email@example.com study guide online at www.jea.org/certification follow us on Twitter @jeaCertified or @jeapressrights http://www.slideshare.net/candaceperkinsbowen/