ERIC Number: ED226438
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982
Reference Count: 0
U.S. Supreme Court Attempts to Establish New First Amendment "Right": Pico v. Island Trees School Board.
CCBC Notebook, the Competency Based Curriculum, p3-13
In the case of "Pico v. Island Trees Union Free School District," involving school library censorship by a Long Island (New York) board, the U.S. Supreme Court in 1982 failed to decide whether board discretion or First Amendment rights should prevail, and instead remanded the case to lower courts. The author of this document first reviews the events leading up to the parents' suit against the board for removing books from the school libraries; he describes the decisions for the board in federal district court and for the parents in circuit court. Next he reviews the issues as seen in the Court's plurality opinion, by Justice Brennan, which emphasized First Amendment rights and the need to know the board's intent. He then explains dissenting opinions by Justices Burger, Powell, Rehnquist, and O'Connor, which saw the Court's action as an infringement on school boards' rights. Subsequently the author compares the two positions. He lists three conclusions about the case: first, that public education is the responsibility of states and school boards; second, that First Amendment cases engender confusing side issues; and, third, that boards should publish clear policies and apply them consistently. (RW)
Publication Type: Legal/Legislative/Regulatory Materials; Journal Articles
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: CFK, Ltd., Denver, CO.
Authoring Institution: National Conference of Professors of Educational Administration.
Identifiers: First Amendment; New York; Pico v Island Trees Union Free School District; Supreme Court