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School censorship costs advisers, students at Illinois student media


by Randy Swikle

Hazelwood stories: Here is a nutshell of Stevenson High School in Lincolnshire, Illinois., and how Hazelwood diminished Barb Thill’s J-program:25 years of Hazelwood art

In Illinois, all but four staff members of one of the nation’s most honored student newspapers quit the publication and dropped their journalism class after school officials publicly rebuked student reporters and their adviser, repeatedly censored accurate articles, revoked the “designated forum” status of the paper, adopted a policy of prior review and edited the paper themselves.

The adviser, a nationally recognized teacher, lost her position. (In a year’s time, two replacement advisers also lost their “newspaper adviser” assignments.)

In an editorial, the Chicago Tribune criticized school authorities and praised student journalists for the high quality of their censored work.

One Comment

  1. The so-called professional media did very little to support the Stevenson kids or their adviser at that time. Shared shame on them!

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