As the end of the current semester quickly approaches, First Amendment Watch and the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education are already thinking ahead to this fall’s freshman orientation season on America’s college campuses. Use our latest orientation modules to talk about student press freedom and student's online speech rights.
Nicholas Meriwether, a political philosophy professor at Shawnee State University, sued the institution after he was investigated for refusing to refer to a student by her preferred gender pronouns. The professor claims that doing so would go against his religious beliefs, and sued the school on First Amendment grounds.
More than a thousand professors and graduate students have pledged not to speak at the University of Mississippi (Ole Miss) until the administration provides a “full and transparent” account of the events that led to the firing of Garrett Felber, a well-regarded history professor.
The report details 35 incidents of universities punishing students or faculty for speech online, and 10 universities with policies in place that FIRE says give administrators “immense power to punish large swaths of speech.” According to the advocacy group, many public universities are acting like the First Amendment applies differently to online speech.
At least two universities have postponed activities that may violate the President Sept. 22 directive against "race and sex stereotyping." It's likely more will opt to cancel activities, rather than risk being cut off from federal funds.
The 21-year-old claims he is being singled out because of his political beliefs, and that students who wrote posts advocating for violence against police officers were not punished. Though the First Amendment generally protects public university student's right to express themselves online, experts say the extent of those protections may be different in the context of military institutions.
The newspaper sued the university after the student government passed a bill excluding media student groups from accessing activity funds. The legislation was passed just days after the paper published a controversial article satirizing safe spaces.
Represented by the Alliance Defending Freedom, students claim their school's policies limit spontaneous expression, and leave them vulnerable to viewpoint discrimination.