Saint Augustine’s College: Student Prohibited from Walking at Graduation Due to Facebook Post

Category: Due Process, Free Speech
Schools: St. Augustine’s University

Saint Augustine’s College (SAC) in Raleigh, North Carolina, refused to allow a student to participate in its graduation ceremonies due to a comment he posted on Facebook about how the college was handling its recovery from tornado damage. Despite SAC’s extensive promises of freedom of expression for students, the college disciplined student Roman Caple because of what it called a “negative social media exchange.” On July 8, 2011, Caple filed a lawsuit against SAC and its president, Dianne Boardley Suber, in North Carolina Superior Court, seeking damages for SAC’s violation of its promises of free expression. Caple is represented by attorney Brandon S. Atwater.