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Student Rights

For liberty to be preserved, it must be nurtured in the hearts and minds of young people. The ACLU educates students about the many important rights they have and supports those who exercise their rights. In doing so, we help to prepare the next generation of guardians of liberty.

Has your son or daughter been “emergency expelled” from school for a minor disciplinary infraction that presented no threat? Has a teacher searched all the texts on your phone because you forgot to turn it off during class? Has a friend who’s trying to form a Gay-Straight Alliance at your high school been told that the group is “too controversial” and cannot hold meetings on school grounds?
 

Topic Resources

News Release, Published: 
Friday, November 20, 2009
Students in Bellingham can continue distributing at school the alternative newspaper they produce thanks to help from the ACLU.
News Release, Published: 
Friday, November 20, 2009
In the first legal action of its kind in Washington, two sets of parents of Wahkiakum High School students filed a lawsuit on Dec. 17, 1999 challenging Wahkiakum School District’s policy of suspicionless urine testing for students who participate in extracurricular athletic activities.
News Release, Published: 
Friday, November 20, 2009
A former high school student who was suspended for creating a parody on the Internet is getting damages from the school district that wrongfully punished him.
News Release, Published: 
Friday, November 20, 2009
For the second straight year, the first week of school brought the ACLU a plea for help from a student in trouble for refusing to stand for the flag salute.
News Release, Published: 
Friday, November 20, 2009
In the wake of the tragic murder of gay student Matthew Shepard in Wyoming, civil rights advocates in Washington are calling for passage of the Safe Schools Act.
News Release, Published: 
Monday, November 2, 2009
Jessica Beckett, a senior at North Kitsap High School in Poulsbo, has been selected to receive a Youth Activist Scholarship Award in recognition of her work for civil liberties. The $4,000 college scholarship is one of nine awarded by the American Civil Liberties Union to high school students around the nation.
News Release, Published: 
Monday, November 2, 2009
Responding to problems faced by students in several schools, the American Civil Liberties Union is advising school officials statewide that their existing rules for student-organized clubs may discriminate against some student organizations. In a letter sent to school districts throughout Washington, the ACLU explained that federal law makes it clear that student clubs promoting tolerance for gay students are entitled to the same resources as other clubs.
News Release, Published: 
Monday, November 2, 2009
The Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) has the same free speech rights as other student clubs at Federal Way High School, thanks to action by the ACLU. In March school officials notified the GSA that a student government vote against the club will not be grounds for denying it equal access to school resources.
News Release, Published: 
Monday, November 2, 2009
Reasonable rules against harassment on the basis of sexual orientation do not violate the free speech rights of students and teachers. Here are some general guidelines for striking a balance between protecting free speech and protecting students against harassment.

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