Students may produce official school publications as part of the curriculum under the supervision of a faculty advisor and the principal. Official school publications include material produced in the journalism, newspaper, yearbook, or writing classes and distributed to the student body either free or for a fee.
Any expression made by students, including student expression in official school publications, is not an expression of official school policy. The school district, the board, and the employees or officials are not liable in any civil or criminal action for any student expression made or published by students unless the employees or officials have interfered with or altered the content of the student speech or expression. The liability, if any, is only to the extent of the interference or alteration of the speech or expression.
Official school publications are free from prior restraint by employees or officials except as provided by law. A faculty advisor shall supervise student writers to maintain professional standards of English and journalism and to comply with the law including, but not limited to, the restrictions against unlawful speech. The production of official school publications shall be guided by the law and by the ethical standards adopted by professional associations or societies of journalism.
Persons, other than students, who believe they have been aggrieved by student expression in a student-produced official school publication shall follow the grievance procedure outlined in board policy 214. Students who believe their freedom of expression in a student-produced official school publication has been restricted shall follow the grievance procedure outlined in board policy 502.4.
The superintendent shall be responsible for developing a student publications code. This regulation shall include, but not be limited to, reasonable rules including time, place, and manner of restrictions. The superintendent shall also be responsible for distributing this policy and the student publications code to the students and their parents.
Legal Reference: Hazelwood School District v. Kuhlmeier, 484 U.S. 260 (1988).
Bystrom v. Fridley High School, 822 F.2d 747 (8th Cir. 1987).
Iowa Code § 280.22 (2013).
Cross Reference: 309 Communication Channels
502 Student Rights and Responsibilities
504 Student Activities
903.5 Distribution of Material
Reviewed: 8-9-93, 1-13-03, 10-10-05, 11-9-09, 1-26-15, 2-22-2021