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ERIC Number: EJ1056909
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Abstractor: As Provided
The Impact of Symbolic Speech in Public Schools: A Selective Case Analysis from "Tinker" to "Zamecnik"
Waggoner, Charles R.
Administrative Issues Journal: Education, Practice, and Research, v3 n1 p64-72 2013
The freedom to express the self and the right to a free public education sets the American public school experience apart from those of many other nations. The combination of the two often creates tensions and confrontations that become contentious leading to litigation. For the past fifty years the courts have attempted to balance the symbolic rights of students with the obligation of the school to protect students from bullying, while maintaining decorum that allows all students to pursue an education free from intimidation. Young people express themselves in many ways, often in a symbolic manner that involves the wearing of a t-shirt or other artifacts conveying their self-expression of ideas and idiosyncrasies. When the learning environment is jeopardized as a result of that speech, the courts have been called upon to determine whether or not the suppression of the speech by school officials is appropriate. Tinker v. Des Moines has served as the bedrock case for symbolic speech, and, since then, there are those who have contended that the courts have chipped away at student rights. The case of Zamecnik v. Indian Prairie School District 204 is illustrative of this contention.
Descriptors: Public Schools, Case Studies, Educational Environment, Court Litigation, Freedom of Speech, Student Rights, Speech Communication, Advocacy, Student Empowerment, Self Expression, Educational Administration, Educational Practices
Southwestern Oklahoma State University. 100 Campus Drive PAX 208, Weatherford, OK 73096. Tel: 580-774-7175; Fax: 580-774-7020; e-mail: email@example.com; Web site: http::www.swosu.edu/academics/aij/index.asps
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: Bethel School District 403 v Fraser; Tinker v Des Moines Independent School District