High court avoids Hazelwood application to colleges





CALIFORNIA -- The U.S. Supreme Court in March declined to hear a case over the rejection of a graduate student's thesis that could have addressed the application of its Hazelwood standard at the collegiate level.

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\nThe 1988 Hazelwood School District v. Kuhlmeier decision holds that high school officials can censor school-sponsored student expression if they can show that their censorship is ''reasonably related to legitimate pedagogical concerns.''

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\nChristopher Brown sued the University of California at Santa Barbara after university officials withheld his master's degree because he included an unapproved ''disacknowledgments'' section in his thesis that criticized administrators.

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\nIn August 2002, a three-judge federal appellate court panel ruled in Brown v. Li that colleges can limit student speech in academic work, but the judges did not agree whether Hazelwood ought to apply.


reports, Spring 2003