On May 5th, the Knight Foundation and Gallup released the 2020 First Amendment on Campus report, an online survey of more than 3,000 full-time undergraduate students, and a large cohort of students from historically black colleges and universities. The First Amendment survey began in the spring of 2016, and the respondents for the 2020 report were queried in the fall of 2019, well before the COVID-19 pandemic.
First Amendment Watch and FIRE are proud to launch a freshman orientation program aimed at teaching incoming college students about their free speech rights on campus. We've developed a series of modules for universities to utilize during freshman orientation, first-year seminars, and other campus programming to teach new college students about their rights and about common free speech issues they may encounter during their time in school
A lawsuit filed in January against Iowa State University (ISU) has been dropped after the university agreed to amend some of its policies in an out-of-court settlement signed on March 10th.
The university’s decision to reverse the suspensions was welcomed by civil rights groups including the New York Civil Liberties Union, who warned that the punishment could chill student speech.
The settlement is part of a 2017 lawsuit filed by a student who a student believes the university discriminated against him and his group when it refused to fund a pro-life event. In addition to paying the student $240,000, the university agreed to amend its policies to ensure future funding is allocated in a viewpoint neutral manner.
The student artwork, a parody of Caravaggio's "Judith Beheading Holofernes," involved swapping the figures for the Statue of Liberty and President Trump. The university's decision to censor the artwork appears to go against policies the school lays out in their student handbook.
Every year since 2011, the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) has issued a list of 10 individual colleges and universities that, via policies or actions, have threatened the free speech rights of their students and faculty.
The Ohio State Senate passed a new bill on campus speech on January 28th that will prohibit free speech zones, and ban the imposition of security fees based on the controversial nature of the speaker’s expression.