Jeff Browne speaks with Frank LoMonte, director of the Student Press Law Center, for the documentary "Taking the Lede" on Monday, March 23, 2015. The SPLC provides legal counsel for students facing censorship in their schools and connects them with local legal aid.
The Student Press Law Center inhabits a modest office in Washington D.C. From there, former corporate attorney, Frank LoMonte, and one staff attorney, Adam Goldstein, provide free legal counsel to high school and college students across the country who face censorship from their school administrators.
On Monday, March 23, 2015, a team from CU's News Corps interviewed LoMonte and Goldstein in their cramped offices for an interview that focuses on high school journalism in the state of Colorado. That documentary, "Taking the Lede," highlights several instances of outstanding student journalism since Colorado passed a law in 1990 guaranteeing students the right to free speech in their student publications.
Frank LoMonte holds up a smiling paper bag while speaking with News Corps on Monday, March 23, 2015. He and his staff wear the bag as a mask to college campuses around the country to criticize the secretive hiring practices some universities employ with respect to prsidents, deans, and other high-ranking officials.
Colorado's law was passed in response to a Supremem Court case, Kuhlmeier v. Hazelwood, which granted public schools the right to censor student press at their discrection. Today, only seven states have passed laws similar to the one in Colorado protecting student free expression. The SPLC has made it their mission to inform students of their rights and to push for additional states to pass anti-Hazelwood laws.
Frank LoMonte shows the "Cure Hazelwood" bracelets SPLC hands out at speaking engagements and events. Kuhlmeier v. Hazelwood is a Supreme Court decision which permited public school officials to censor and exercise prior restraint over student publications.
The Student Press Law Center does a lot with a little
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