What boundaries should schools set on their students’ actions outside of school or should they be able to even do so at all? Brandi Levy was faced with this problem four years ago after uploading a post expressing her frustration due to not making the cheerleading team. Even though the post was fairly inappropriate, there were no targeted groups or any individual students being harmed. Following this, she was suspended by the school as they believed it was their responsibility to monitor their students’ posts for safety concerns. Note that Levy was not on school grounds, used her own technology, and did not violate any safety regulations.
Surely everyone has experienced intense emotions before, ranting about what has brought someone distress is necessary. This is exactly why I was in disbelief after reading YOU DECIDE: School Social Media Free Speech Case (McGraw Hill). If no students are being harmed and there are no threats, schools interfering with what a student is able to say/ not say is a violation of the First Amendment; Freedom of Speech. However, I believe that it should be encouraged for schools to voice their concerns across posts. The guardians of the student should be notified first as they are the ones who have authority over them. Understanding where and where not to cross the lines is extremely crucial. Students’ safety should definitely be a top priority but schools are not needed to filter students down to the point where they feel as if they cannot freely speak what is on their minds.
Do you believe that schools should monitor students’ posts? If so, do you think there are boundaries in doing so?