Governors State University: Censorship of Student Newspaper

Category: Free Speech
Schools: Governors State University

A college administrator at Governors State University in Illinois censored a student newspaper that was highly critical of her administration. The Seventh Circuit chose to apply Hazelwood v. Kuhlmeier, a Supreme Court decision allowing prior review of certain high school newspapers, to student fee-funded college media. This directly contradicted two other Supreme Court decisions by holding that a student paper or group could potentially be controlled by the university merely because for receiving funding from mandatory student fees that are considered to belong to the student body, not the university. FIRE was disappointed that the Supreme Court refused to hear the case and Greg Lukianoff concluded that, "while FIRE normally accepts courts’ interpretations of First Amendment freedoms, we will continue to argue that this case was wrongly decided. Our commitment to freedom requires no less."