POLICY APPLICABLE TO ALL PERSONNEL


Instructional personnel of this school system are expected to exercise their constitutionally guaranteed right to freedom of expression.  The Board recognizes that no freedom is absolute, and that in this case restrictions come from at least three sources:


1.         Legal


            Governing bodies can, within frequently court-defined limits, restrict freedom

            of speech, as for example within the "clear and present danger" doctrine of the

United States Supreme Court.  The constitutional guarantees do not permit unrestricted utterances or publication of remarks or literature which is blasphemous or profane, obscene, fraudulent, or otherwise           injurious or harmful.  Differences of opinion on what constitutes acceptable regulation of freedom of speech in this sector may find solution only by legal action.


2.         Societal


            Communities vary in what they will tolerate in classroom discussion.  Limits of

such toleration change with time and place.  Differences of opinion between teachers and community feelings may not so much be a matter for court adjudication as for tolerance on the part of each contender for the other's position.


3.         Professional


            Teachers and their organizations must themselves decide what effect insisting on

            exercising freedom of speech, or accepting some degree of regulation thereof,

will have on their role as teachers, or on their ultimate effectiveness in the education process.


The Board requests that any differences of opinion about exercise or abridgment of freedom of speech within or among members of the Board, staff, and especially instructional personnel be reviewed by all parties concerned in the light of the above three factors.






Policy                                                                           COLUMBUS PUBLIC SCHOOLS

Adopted:   _3/13/06___                                               Columbus, Nebraska

                                                                                    Reviewed:  11/9/09