Advisers In Brief





Magazine adviser restored after being fired for sexual poem

WASHINGTON — Administrators at Shorewood High School reinstated Steve Kelly for the 2005-06 academic year as adviser of Imprints, the school’s literary magazine, after he was asked to resign last year when the publication he oversaw printed a poem about a sexual experience.

Kelly was asked to resign in June after 17-year-old student Zoya Raskina published a poem titled "My first fuck" in the 2004-05 edition of the magazine in which the narrator describes being pressured into a first sexual experience.

After a grievance hearing on Aug. 8, district officials withdrew a proposed letter of reprimand and restored Kelly as adviser, according to Donna Lurie of the Washington Education Association, a local teachers union.

Newspaper adviser gets $74,000 in settlement

INDIANA — Franklin Township Schools will pay former newspaper adviser Chad Tuley about $74,000 and cover his attorney’s fees per an out-of-court settlement reached in October.

Tuley, who is on sabbatical leave, will continue to be paid his regular salary through the end of the school year, when his resignation takes effect, and will receive an additional $40,000 lump sum payment after that, according to the settlement. The settlement also stipulates the school district will pay Tuley’s legal fees of $23,125.

Tuley agreed never to work for the school district again.

Tuley was removed as adviser of Pilot Flashes and suspended for a week with pay in November 2004 after the student newspaper printed an article about a student arrested on murder charges.

He was eventually reassigned to a middle school, which he said he saw as punishment for allowing publication of the article in question.

After asking to be reinstated as adviser and being denied, he filed suit against the school district claming his and his students’ First Amendment rights had been violated.

Two students win award for pursuing lawsuit

KANSAS — Two former students were presented with the 2005 College Press Freedom Award at the Associated Collegiate Press convention in October for pursuing a lawsuit to protect the First Amendment at Kansas State University.

Mark Goodman, executive director of the Student Press Law Center, said that Katie Lane and Sarah Rice won the award "for their selfless commitment to their adviser, their university, their student newspaper and the First Amendment, long after they have any prospect of personally benefiting from their efforts in this case."

The two former students are appealing a federal court decision made over the summer in Kansas that said the university’s decision to fire their adviser based on an "overall content analysis" did not violate the constitutional rights of the adviser or the students.

"We’re really concerned about the precedent and setting the record straight about what administration can and can’t do with a college newspaper," Lane said. The adviser, Ron Johnson, has dropped his name from the case.

Johnson, who had been the paper’s adviser for more than 15 years, was told in May 2004 that he was being dismissed. Later he was told it was because of a lack in overall quality of the student newspaper.

Paper staff up in arms over adviser’s removal

NEW YORK — On Oct. 7, administrators at Le Moyne College elected not to renew the contract of a popular student newspaper adviser.

As a result, The Dolphin’s editorial staff voted 7-0 to halt publication of the newspaper until Alan Fischler is reinstated, said Dolphin Editor Andrew Brenner.

"We were absolutely livid" about the decision, said Brenner. He added that the staff will remain loyal to Fischler, who has been the newspaper’s adviser for eight years.

Shawn Ward, vice president for student development, said the decision to remove Fischler had nothing to with the newspaper’s content. He said the newspaper had not printed anything the college was unhappy with. The decision was based on quality and grammatical mistakes, Ward said.

But Brenner said Ward told him in a meeting in November that among other reasons for their decision, administrators were upset with a weekly satire column in which the columnist sometimes poked fun at the college.


reports, Winter 2005-06