Hinds Community College: Student Barred from Class

Category: Due Process, Free Speech
Schools: Hinds Community College

On March 29, 2010, Hinds Community College (HCC) student Isaac Rosenbloom complained to a fellow student following class that his grade in the course was “going to f— up my entire GPA.” After overhearing this comment, Rosenbloom’s professor, Barbara Pyle, threatened him with “detention” and submitted a disciplinary complaint against Rosenbloom. HCC found Rosenbloom guilty of “flagrant disrespect” and issued him twelve “demerits,” just three short of suspension, and involuntarily withdrew him from Pyle’s course, causing him to lose his financial aid eligibility. After HCC failed to respond to FIRE’s initial letter, FIRE obtained the assistance of attorneys Robert B. McDuff and Sibyl Byrd, who took up Rosenbloom’s case and secured a settlement in his favor in July 2010, allowing him to resume his training as a paramedic. Unfortunately, HCC continues to maintain an unconstitutional ban on “public profanity, cursing and vulgarity.”