California University of Pennsylvania

Location: California, Pennsylvania
Website: http://www.calu.edu
Type: Public
Federal Circuit: 3rd Circuit

Speech Code Rating

California University of Pennsylvania has been given the speech code rating Red. A red light university has at least one policy that both clearly and substantially restricts freedom of speech. Read more here.

  • Pennsylvania House of Representatives Select Committee on Student Academic Freedom

    September 19, 2005

    The Pennsylvania House of Representatives brought together a committee to examine allegations that Pennsylvania’s public universities were plagued by liberal ideology and indoctrination. David A. French, at the time president of FIRE, served as a legal adviser to the panel. FIRE released FIRE Report on the First Amendment Responsibilities of Pennsylvania State-Funded Colleges and Universities, explaining that Pennsylvania universities are bound to follow the strictures of the U.S. and Pennsylvania Constitutions, notably to respect the expressive rights of students and faculty members, to protect religious liberty on campus, and to protect freedom of conscience on campus.

    » Read More

Red Light Policies

  • Electronic Mail Policy 14-15

    Speech Code Category: Internet Usage Policies
    Last updated: January 9, 2015

    Do not send or store inappropriate messages. Examples include but are not limited to the following list:

    b. Any sexually suggestive, pornographic or obscene material or material that a reasonable individual may find personally offensive or inappropriate;

    h. Harassment or threats, including but not limited to, the distribution of defamatory, fraudulent, intimidating, abusive, or offensive messages.

    » Read More


Yellow Light Policies
  • Policy Statements and Compliance Procedures on Equal Education and Employment Opportunity and Social Equity 14-15

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: January 9, 2015

    California University’s definition of sexual harassment is consistent with the guidelines of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s current definition of sexual harassment. That definition includes unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature. Examples include: … Such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s work performance or education experience or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work or educational environment.

    Sexual harassment may take many forms, including deliberate or careless use of offensive or demeaning terms connected with a person’s gender or sexual orientation; sexually suggestive comments, compliments, jokes, innuendos, or questions; offensive displays ….

    Harassment is defined as any type of behavior based on gender, race, ethnicity, national origin, age, disability, religion or veteran status that is so severe or pervasive that it interferes with an individual’s work performance or creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive working environment. Harassment when directed at an individual because of his/her gender, race, ethnicity, national origin, age, disability, religion or veteran status may include, but is not limited to: unwanted physical contact; use of epithets, inappropriate jokes, comments or innuendos; obscene or harassing telephone calls, e-mails, letters, notes or other forms of communication; and any conduct that may create a hostile working environment.

    » Read More

  • Student Handbook: Threat Response, Assessment, and Intervention 14-15

    Speech Code Category: Policies on Tolerance, Respect, and Civility
    Last updated: January 9, 2015

    THREATENING BEHAVIOR INCLUDES, BUT IS NOT LIMITED TO:

    1. Physical actions short of actual contact/injury (i.e., moving closer aggressively, waving arms or fists, yelling in an aggressive or threatening manner),
    2. General oral or written threats to people or property (i.e., “you better watch your back” or “I’ll get you”),
    3. Threats made in a “joking” manner,
    4. Stalking behavior,
    5. Hate speech, or
    6. Implicit threats (i.e., “you’ll be sorry” or “this isn’t over yet”).

    » Read More

  • Student Handbook: Student Code of Conduct 14-15

    Speech Code Category: Internet Usage Policies
    Last updated: January 9, 2015

    Giving One’s Best would require one NOT engage in the following: … Use of the university information technology resources to transmit abusive, threatening, or harassing material, chain letters, spam, or other communications prohibited by state or federal law

    » Read More

  • Student Handbook: Residence Hall Rules, Regulations and Policies- Approval for Posting Signs and Flyers 14-15

    Speech Code Category: Posting and Distribution Policies
    Last updated: January 9, 2015

    All postings without stamped approval or hung in unauthorized locations will be removed. Postings may not promote or advertise parties, alcohol/drug use or contain obscene language or graphic content.

    » Read More

  • Gender-Based/Sexual Misconduct (Title IX) Policy 14-15

    Speech Code Category: Bullying Policies
    Last updated: January 9, 2015

    Bullying, defined as repeated and/or severe aggressive behavior likely to intimidate or intentionally hurt, control or diminish another person, physically or mentally (that is not speech or conduct otherwise protected by the First Amendment).

    » Read More


Green Light Policies
  • Student Handbook: Student Code of Conduct 14-15

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: January 9, 2015

    Treating Others Fairly would require one NOT engage in the following:

    1. Sexual Harassment is a form of sex discrimination and the University is obligated to address unwelcome actions and behaviors by a student toward another student or other person based on sex that is sufficiently severe or persistent so as to interfere with that student’s ability to participate in or benefit from the University’s programs.

    2. Harassing behavior, meaning repeated, severe or pervasive actions directed toward specific individual(s) with the intent to harass or alarm including actual, attempted or threatened physical contact, and/or acts that serve no legitimate purpose.

    » Read More

  • Gender-Based/Sexual Misconduct (Title IX) Policy 14-15

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: January 9, 2015

    Sexual Harassment

    Unwelcome, gender-based verbal or physical conduct that is sufficiently severe, persistent or pervasive that it has the effect of unreasonably interfering with, limiting or denying someone the ability to participate in or benefit from the University’s educational program.

    Other Misconduct Offenses that will fall under Title IX when Gender-Based:

    Threatening or causing physical harm, extreme verbal abuse or other conduct which threatens or endangers the health or safety of any person.

    » Read More


  • California University of Pennsylvania Wins FIRE’s Speech Code of the Month

    June 14, 2015

    By Aleister at College Insurection Students at this school have to be careful not to email any inappropriate messages. Samantha Harris reports at the FIRE blog. Speech Code of the Month: California University of Pennsylvania FIRE announces its Speech Code of the Month for June 2015: California University of Pennsylvania (CUP). CUP (located in the town of California, Pa., hence the name) is one of the fourteen public universities comprising the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education. As a public university, CUP is required to uphold the First Amendment rights of its students. Indeed, courts in the Third Circuit, the […]

    » Read More
  • Free- Speech Group Criticizes Cal U Email Policy

    June 13, 2015

    By Bill Schackner at Pittsburgh Post-Gazette California University of Pennsylvania said Friday it will review its email usage policy in light of an assertion by a foundation that the rules conflict with the First Amendment. The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, which defends individual rights on college campuses, said in a statement issued Thursday that the policy’s “extraordinarily broad” language potentially subjects employees and students to discipline — including dismissal from the university — for any message an individual might consider inappropriate. The organization, based in Philadelphia, dubbed Cal U’s policy as its “Speech Code” of the month. The […]

    » Read More
  • Group Takes Issue with Cal U Email Policy

    June 11, 2015

    By Bill Schackner at Pittsburgh Post-Gazette A foundation that defends individual rights on college campuses took issue today with an email policy at California University of Pennsylvania that it says is at odds with the First Amendment. The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, based in Philadelphia, says the policy’s “extraordinarily broad” language potentially subjects employees and students to discipline including dismissal from the university for any message an individual might consider inappropriate. The organization, in a statement, said it defines “speech code” as any campus regulation or policy forbidding “expression that would be protected by the First Amendment in […]

    » Read More
  • Speech Code of the Month: California University of Pennsylvania

    June 9, 2015

    FIRE announces its Speech Code of the Month for June 2015: California University of Pennsylvania (CUP). CUP (located in the town of California, Pa., hence the name) is one of the fourteen public universities comprising the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education. As a public university, CUP is required to uphold the First Amendment rights of its students. Indeed, courts in the Third Circuit, the jurisdiction of which includes Pennsylvania, have repeatedly held—at schools like Shippensburg University of Pennsylvania and Temple University—that public university speech codes violate the First Amendment. Unfortunately, CUP’s Electronic Mail Policy disregards that constitutional obligation. With […]

    » Read More