Sewanee, The University of the South

Location: Sewanee, Tennessee
Type: Private
Federal Circuit: 6th Circuit

Speech Code Rating

Sewanee, The University of the South 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.

This school does not have any cases at this time.

Red Light Policies

  • Appropriate Use of Information Technology 14-15

    Speech Code Category: Internet Usage Policies

    Impermissible uses (some of which may constitute illegal uses), but are not limited to the following: …

    • Viewing, posting or sending obscene, pornographic, sexually explicit, or offensive material;
    • Posting or sending material that is contrary to the mission and values of the University.

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  • Student Code of Conduct 14-15

    Speech Code Category: Policies on Tolerance, Respect, and Civility

    When we commit to living in community with one another, we necessarily agree to accept limitations on our own actions for the benefit of all, with the parallel expectation that we will not be injured, maligned, or otherwise negatively affected by the actions of others.

    In addition to the specified, impermissible behavior, conduct which violates the general terms of the Sewanee social policy and conduct which includes, but is not limited to, the following categories may also be dealt with by the Deans of Students as they deem appropriate: … disrespect.

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Yellow Light Policies
  • Harassment Policy and Procedures 14-15

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies

    The University of the South stands firmly for the principle that its students, faculty, and staff members have a right to be free from harassment based on race, color, sex, religion, national origin, age, disability, sexual orientation, or protected activity under anti-discrimination statutes by any other member of the University community, and the University does not tolerate any form of harassment.

    Conduct prohibited by this policy does not include simple teasing, off-hand comments, or isolated incidents that are not extremely serious. Rather, conduct that rises to the level of harassment must be so offensive as to alter the conditions of employment or the educational environment. If the harassment culminates in a tangible employment or education action or is sufficiently severe or pervasive so that a hostile work or education environment is created, then the conduct is prohibited. … Conduct that may create a hostile environment includes offensive statements and comments, unwelcome touching, and displays of offensive pictures or other materials.

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  • Mail Use 14-15

    Speech Code Category: Internet Usage Policies

    Sending electronic mail that is abusive or threatens an individual’s safety is unacceptable behavior. 

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Green Light Policies
  • University Purpose 14-15

    Speech Code Category: Advertised Commitments to Free Expression

    The University of the South is an institution of the Episcopal Church dedicated to the pursuit of knowledge, understanding, and wisdom in close community and in full freedom of inquiry, and enlightened by Christian faith in the Anglican tradition, welcoming individuals from all backgrounds, to the end that students be prepared to search for truth, seek justice, preserve liberty under law, and serve God and humanity.

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  • Sexual Misconduct Definitions 14-15

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies


    * unwelcome, gender-based verbal or physical conduct
    * that is so sufficiently severe, persistent, or pervasive
    * that it unreasonably interferes with, denies, or limits someone’s ability to participate in or benefit from the college’s educational program and/or activities,
    * and is based on power differentials (quid pro quo), the creation of a hostile environment, or retaliation.

    Examples include (but are not limited to) attempting to coerce an unwilling person into a sexual relationship; repeatedly subjecting a person to egregious, unwelcome sexual attention; punishing a refusal to comply with a sexually based request; conditioning a benefit on submitting to sexual advances; stalking; gender-based bullying; sexual violence; and intimate partner violence. “Stalking” (see below) falls under this category.


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This school does not have any media coverage at this time.
  • In Verdict Against Sewanee, Federal Jury Sends Important Message About Proper Handling of Sexual Assault Cases

    September 6, 2011

    Last week, a federal jury in Tennessee delivered a key verdict in a former student’s suit against Sewanee: the University of the South after the school found him guilty of violating its sexual assault policy. In a decision that should send some rumblings through the world of higher education and make universities think twice about the way they adjudicate allegations of sexual misconduct and rape, the jury awarded $26,500 in compensatory damages to the former student for Sewanee’s negligence in mishandling his disciplinary hearing. The case began with a female student’s 2008 accusation of rape. As The Chronicle of Higher […]

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