The College of Idaho

Location: Caldwell, Idaho
Website: http://www.collegeofidaho.edu
Type: Private
Federal Circuit: 9th Circuit

Speech Code Rating

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  • Albertson College of Idaho: Speech Code Repeal

    June 15, 2005

    Albertson College of Idaho was FIRE’s Speech Code of the Month for July, 2005. The university’s harassment policy prohibited comments that “fail to respect dignity and feelings,” and stated that students could be punished for undefined behaviors that the school considered “inconsistent with the standards and expectations.” After FIRE brought attention to the school’s policy it was changed, resulting in a victory for free speech on campus.

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Yellow Light Policies
  • Student Handbook: Standards of Conduct 09-10

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies, Statement

    Acts which harm or are intended to harm, intimidate, or humiliate another member of the college community through the use of physical force, the threat of force, or verbal abuse, as well as other forms of insults.

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  • Student Handbook: Student Involvement- Advertising Policy 09-10

    Speech Code Category: Posting Policies, Statement

    Posters must be in good taste and can neither discriminate on the basis of race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, color, national origin, age, disability or marital status, nor promote inappropriate behavior.

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  • Student Handbook: Harassment 09-10

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies, Statement

    Verbal or physical conduct that may constitute harassment includes, but is not limited to: actions; words; flirtations; advances; propositions; verbal abuse; jokes; verbal commentaries or degrading words used to describe an individual based on an individual's sex, race, color, age, religion, disability, national origin, veteran status, sexual orientation or any other legally protected characteristics.

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  • Student Handbook: Residence Hall Policies- Decoration Policy 09-10

    Speech Code Category: Posting Policies, Statement

    Students are free to display posters and other personal possessions within their assigned rooms and doors. However, possession or displays that are inconsistent with community standards or that could be construed to create a hostile environment cannot be displayed in general view of the public. Decorations in question must be removed if deemed to create a hostile or threatening environment or create an atmosphere that is inconsistent with community standards and a safe, respectful learning environment.

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Green Light Policies
  • Student Handbook: Harassment 09-10

    Speech Code Category: Advertised Commitments to Free Expression, Statement

    The College of Idaho is committed to supporting academic freedom and freedom of speech, in an environment of open and vigorous dialogue within the reasonable limits of the law.

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  • Student Handbook: Harassment 09-10

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies, Statement

    The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has defined sexual harassment in its regulations. That definition is similarly applicable to all other forms of harassment based on protected characteristics of sexual orientation, race, religion, disability, age and ethnic background. Sexual harassment is defined as:

    Unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature constitutes sexual harassment when: ... Such conduct has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with an individual's work or academic performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, abusive or offensive environment.

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  • Hurt feelings against Albertson’s official policy

    July 23, 2005

    “Book him, Dan-o. He hurt my feelings.” Being nice at Albertson College in Caldwell isn’t just a good idea. It’s the law. A stupid law, according to the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education. Ours is a crass age. You would think a niceness policy would earn applause. You would think people would appreciate concern for civility, decorum and other people’s feelings. Nah. Albertson College’s policy was cited as the foundation’s July 2005 Speech Code of the Month. The harassment policy in Albertson’s student handbook forbids “any comments or conduct relating to a person’s race, gender, religion, disability, age or […]

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  • ‘Speech Code of the Month’ in ‘The FIRE Quarterly’

    May 25, 2007

    As Torch readers know, each month, FIRE features a college or university with a particularly egregious speech code as its Speech Code of the Month. We use Speech Code of the Month to educate the public about the ever-present problem of speech codes on campus, but the feature also helps put public pressure on these schools to encourage revisions of these repressive policies. An article in our new issue of The FIRE Quarterly discusses the changes in policies FIRE has witnessed in four institutions that have been named Speech Code of the Month in the past. Since June 2005, Albertson […]

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  • New Speech Code of the Month Website Feature

    April 13, 2007

    FIRE’s Speech Code of the Month program has been an important vehicle for change. Since June 2005, five universities—Albertson College of Idaho, the University of Nevada at Reno, Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts, Jacksonville State University, and the University of Mississippi—have changed their policies after being named Speech Code of the Month. In addition, the president of Western Michigan University has stated that his institution will revise a policy that was named FIRE’s Speech Code of the Month for March 2007. Thanks to a new feature, visitors to FIRE’s website can now see our Speech Codes of the Month together […]

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  • Celebrating One Year of ‘The Torch’

    February 28, 2006

    One year ago this month, FIRE launched The Torch as a decisive step into the daily debate over civil liberties on campus. The blog format has proved to be a great forum for FIRE staff members to introduce and follow up on FIRE cases, discuss current legal and policy issues affecting campus rights, point out interesting articles and other blog posts, and present FIRE’s reflections on campus controversies that have not been adopted as FIRE cases. We are especially proud of the scrutiny of misguided campus policies that has been generated by The Torch’s “Speech Code of the Month” feature—indeed, […]

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  • Speech Codes of the Year: 2005

    December 29, 2005

    An outrageous number of colleges and universities severely restrict their students’ expressive rights—so many that researching and analyzing these restrictions is my full-time job. As 2005 draws to a close, I would like to highlight just a few of the particularly outrageous (but, sadly, quite common) restrictions that I found in the course of my research this year. These institutions should be ashamed of themselves. Stevens Institute of Technology provides students with a laundry list of behaviors that constitute sexual harassment, including “sexist jokes,” “comments regarding a person’s attire,” “displaying or discussing materials pertaining to males or females in a […]

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  • Speech Code of the Month: Albertson College of Idaho

    July 5, 2005

    FIRE is proud to announce the Speech Code of the Month for July 2005: Albertson College of Idaho. The Albertson College Student Handbook’s harassment policy states that “[a]ny comments or conduct relating to a person’s race, gender, religion, disability, age or ethnic background that fail to respect the dignity and feelings of the individual are unacceptable.” The Handbook also provides that “[a]ll inappropriate behaviors may not be specifically covered in the misconduct definitions, and students will be held accountable for behaviors considered inconsistent with the standards and expectations described in this handbook.” These provisions are wholly inconsistent with freedom. First, […]

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