When I was a high school journalist, I raised the ire of an assistant principal at my school (John Eggleston) and managed to get myself muzzled—so this op-ed by Richard Just in the Washington Post caught my attention. Unfortunately, I do have to agree with the Supreme Court’s ruling in 1988. Since school papers are published by the school, the school has the right to control what is printed. They own it, they publish it, they have a right to control it—just as News Corp. has a right to control the New York Post, which they publish. But, legal or not, schools should use discretion. They are, after all, supposed to teach. How can a student learn to be a journalist if they are not allowed to act like journalists and ask tough questions?
- Unmuzzling High School Journalists (Washington Post, free registration may be required).