Who We Are Find more about us

The Student Press Law Center is an advocate for student First Amendment rights, for freedom of online speech, and for open government on campus. The SPLC provides information, training and legal assistance at no charge to student journalists and the educators who work with them.

Press Freedom & Censorship

Americans have never been more reliant on students to bring them the day's news. We make sure students can fearlessly share ideas and information free from retaliation.

School Transparency

We're shining a spotlight in the dark crevices of campuses where financial mismanagement and safety hazards hide. Citizen engagement starts with open, accountable government.

Civic Participation

Students want a say in education policy, and policymakers need to hear their unique perspective. We help young people use their voices to advocate for social change.

Online Citizenship

The SPLC advocates for sensible, non-punitive responses to online incivility, with curriculum based on the skills, ethics and values of journalism instead of expulsions and arrests.

Ask for Legal Help

Complete this online form to submit a media law question or report censorship to the SPLC.

Open Record Letter Generator

Submitting an open records request is easy with our fully automated, fill-in-the-blanks state open records law letter generator.

Recent News Read our most recent news and blog posts

Student newspaper at Michigan State U. apologizes for photo some say perpetuated racial stereotypes

 A photo published in its features section upset some members of the institution’s black community. In response, editors removed the photo from the news organization’s website Monday afternoon.

Amendment intends to define ‘reasonable cause’ in Illinois cyber privacy law

A proposed amendment to Illinois’ cyber privacy law would bar school officials from accessing student social media accounts to investigate cyberbullying without specific incident complaints or observed rule violations.

N.J. community college suspends student for tweets about former Red Sox pitcher’s daughter

he college announced the suspension of Adam Nagel on Facebook Monday, saying he was “summarily suspended and will be scheduled for a conduct hearing where further disciplinary action will be taken,” and that Brookdale Police are investigating the student.

Student news organization at U. of North Florida attributes budget cut to ‘friction’ with student government

Last fall, the student government released its budget, which will go into effect on July 1. Spinnaker Media will receive $236,132.37 — a 6.8 percent decline from the previous year.

In Texas, access delayed: Public records appeal process invites abuse

Texas law starts with the assumption that a requestor is owed records within 10 days. But asking the attorney general for an opinion stops the clock and can push the agency’s response time back by a month-and-a-half — which makes the process vulnerable to manipulation by an agency seeking to run out the clock on a deadline-sensitive request.

Independent news site to launch at U. of Redlands following student newspaper’s ‘temporary hiatus’

In response to perceived censorship — following an article that questioned a new scholarship fund’s motives — the Bulldog Weekly’s co-editors launched an online fundraising campaign on Feb. 13 to support an alternative news website, independent from university administrators and the student government.

Know Your RightsFind answers to all your legal questions

Student media guide to due process claims

When Jill Snyder, an eighth grade student at Blue Mountain Middle School in Orwigsburg, Pa., was reprimanded for violating the school dress code, she decided to take matters into her own hands.[1] After school, Snyder went home to create a mock MySpace page ridiculing her school principal.

Don't be mooted: A student plaintiff's guide to keeping your case alive after graduation

Although graduation day is traditionally a time for celebration and for new beginnings, it can bring an unhappy ending to the legal claims of a student who is challenging school censorship. In general, challenges to school policies must be raised by currently affected students. When a student graduates, a court may dismiss her claims as moot.

Sample press release to help combat censorship

A press release, which provides accurate information — with a point of view — to news media, community members and others who might provide public attention or support is an important tool in getting your message out.

Get InvolvedMake the world a better place for student journalists

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Become a Member

We need everyone's support to keep the SPLC's services free and readily available, and the backbone of support comes from contributing SPLC members.

become an attorney volunteer

Become an Attorney Volunteer

Become a member of the ARN and provide legal representation to student journalists in need.

share your story

Share your story

Have you experienced censorship as a student or educator? Share your story and how it’s affected you.

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Spread the Word

Become an SPLC Surrogate Speaker. Use this packet to share the history and mission of the Student Press Law Center with new audiences.