|BILL AS INTRODUCED||2007-2008|
Introduced by Senator White of Windham District, Senator Ayer of Addison District, Senator Lyons of Chittenden District and Senator McCormack of Windsor District
Subject: Education; students; free expression
Statement of purpose: This bill proposes to ensure that students are afforded freedom of expression within the public schools of the state.
AN ACT RELATING TO FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION FOR STUDENTS
It is hereby enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Vermont:
Sec. 1. 16 V.S.A. chapter 41 is added to read:
Chapter 41. STUDENT RIGHTS
§ 1621. FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION
(a) A public school student shall have freedom of expression in the public schools of the state, provided that such expression shall not cause any disruption or disorder within the school.
(b) Freedom of expression shall include the rights and responsibilities of students, collectively and individually, to express their views through speech and symbols; to write, publish, and disseminate their views; and to assemble peaceably on school property for the purpose of expressing their opinions. Any assembly planned by students during regularly scheduled school hours shall be held only at a time and place approved in advance by the school principal or the principal’s designee.
(c) No student expression protected by this section shall be deemed to be an expression of school policy and no parent, legal guardian, school district employee, school district official, or school district shall be held liable in any civil or criminal action for that expression.
The Vermont General Assembly
115 State Street