Pennsylvania High School Cheerleader Speaks Out About Free Speech Case

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  • Bloomberg Quicktake: Now published this video item, entitled “Pennsylvania High School Cheerleader Speaks Out About Free Speech Case” – below is their description.

    The U.S. Supreme Court said a public high school violated the Constitution when it punished a 14-year-old cheerleader for a profane Snapchat rant in a ruling that bolsters the First Amendment rights of students when they post on social media.

    The 8-1 ruling said officials have less power to regulate what students say when they are off-campus and aren’t taking part in school-related activities than when they are in the school environment.

    “This holding protects student expression from school oversight in every aspect of their lives and confirms that parents, not bureaucrats, retain responsibility for their children’s conduct outside of the school campus,” said Pacific Legal Foundation attorney Deborah La Fetra, who filed an amicus brief in support of the cheerleader.

    But the court stopped short of saying that schools can never punish off-campus speech and said judges should make a case-by-case determination of what limits might be permissible.

    The ruling does “not now set forth a broad, highly general First Amendment rule stating just what counts as ‘off campus’ speech and whether or how ordinary First Amendment standards must give way off campus to a school’s special need to prevent,” Justice Stephen Breyer wrote for the court.

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