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‘Hot for Teacher’ Case Hits the Press Again
The Detroit press has jumped on FIRE's case at Oakland University again following yesterday's FIRE press release. In fall 2011, student Joseph Corlett was enrolled in Oakland University's Advanced Critical Writing course, which included a requirement that students keep a journal, described as "a place for a writer to try out ideas and record impressions and observations." After two of Corlett's journal entries described the attractiveness of the course's instructor, Corlett was found guilty of "unlawful individual activities," suspended for three semesters, given persona non grata status, and told he may only return to his studies if he undergoes "counseling" for "sensitivity issues." Corlett lost his appeal at Oakland and is pursuing his case with the assistance of attorney Brian Vincent.
Joseph Corlett's case has received a great deal of press attention this year. Last month it was covered frequently in the national and international press. The most recent coverage includes stories from:
- The Associated Press
- The Detroit Free Press
- The Detroit News
- WDIV (Channel 4 in Detroit)
In addition to these, Reason's blog Hit & Run and the Oakland University student newspaper The Oakland Post have reported on Corlett's case.
We expect that more coverage is coming. It is not too late for Oakland University to restore free speech to its campus and reverse the findings and punishment of Joseph Corlett—and, perhaps, to turn the tide of bad press.
In need of First Amendment resources for teachers? The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education has you covered. Our “First Things First” First Amendment textbook for college undergraduates explores the fundamentals of modern American free speech law. Meanwhile, our K-12 First Amendment curriculum modules help educators enrich and supplement their existing instruction on First Amendment and freedom of expression issues in middle and high school classrooms. Explore thefire.org for even more First Amendment educational resources.
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