Student’s Freedom of Speech in Public School
The First Amendment states that all citizens of the U.S have freedom of religion, petition, assembly, press, and speech. The First Amendment was written and adopted for over two hundred years of American History. Throughout this period people have questioned the extent of freedom that they were given through the First Amendment. The freedom of speech is probably the most misunderstood of all the five components in that the freedom of speech has been altered through many times in court. The U.S government has altered the freedom of speech many times in court, whether it be expanding the rights that were given with the freedom of speech or diminishing the power of it and thus prohibiting people from saying what the government deems as harmful and disruptive to others around them. With the freedom of speech so questioned and confusing to even the general public it is no wonder that when the freedom was put into a public school setting with a bunch of adolescence and kids the topic becomes a hot spot for debating whether students should have the full extent of the protection from the First Amendment.
In a public school setting which is own by the state government the students are promise to have their rights as citizens of the U.S protected to the full extent of the law as stated “students in school as well as out of school are ‘persons’ under our Constitution” (U.S Supreme Court) . Some people agree with the judgment that students are considered U.S citizens and because they are in a public area the students should enjoy the full extent of the rights that were given to them as U.S citizens like any other people, however there is always two sides of a the same coin and thus some suggest to restraint the rights of students to an extent because of the belief that students are not fully grown adults and thus do not have the rationality to use their rights correctly. One of the most debating topics of students in public school would be the freedom of speech that was given to them. Some people belief that students are citizens of U.S and should have the full extent of the freedom of speech given to them, while others belief that students do not have a complete rationality like adults and thus will use their freedom of speech in a wrong way and thus students should be restrain to an certain extent of the rights. Hearing from the two sides with each side having reasons for which they belief in, the question of whether or not students should have full protection of the First Amendment for freedom of speech in a public school is ask and debated constantly.
One key side of the opinion in which supported the idea of students having complete freedom of speech in school stated that students are U.S citizens and thus should have the same right as any other people alike as stated “It can hardly be argued that either students or teachers shed their constitutional rights rot freedom of speech or expression as the schoolhouse gate” (Tinker v. Des Moines School District). In public school cases with the freedom of speech being the issue of the trial the court rule that unless what the student said causes any disturbance in the school or those around them the school are not allow to punish them on the issue in which was spoken or express. One of the greatest examples of students winning against the public school in trials would be the famous supreme case of Tinker v. Des Moines Independent School District, in this Supreme Court case “the school officials could point to no evidence that the wearing of armbands would disrupt the school environment” (faqs). From Tinker v. Des Moines ruling the court stated that school officials may not silence student’s expression and speech on an issue just because they dislike it.
Fig. 1 Allison Edge, Suspension Cartoon 1 (Cartoon Stock. 9 Dec. 2012.)
In a public school it can be said that a new generation of thoughts begins there. In school settings...
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