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

Illinois Supreme Court rules high school association not subject to open records laws

The Illinois Supreme Court upheld lower courts’ rulings that a non-profit school athletic organization is not subject to Freedom of Information Act requests.

Vermont takes major steps to protect journalists – ALL journalists

Vermont Gov. Phil Scott has signed Senate Bill 96, a reporter shield law that will protect journalists – even unpaid ones working outside of mainstream professional news organizations – from being forced to share information gained in confidence.

Michigan State sues ESPN over network's FOIA request

Michigan State University filed a lawsuit against ESPN after a reporter filed a Freedom of Information Act request with the university police department for reports related to sexual assault allegations.

Illinois appellate court rules College of DuPage Foundation is subject to open records requests

An Illinois judge has ruled in favor of The Chicago Tribune, which sued the College of DuPage and the College of DuPage Foundation for access to records under the Freedom of Information Act.

Daily Tar Heel hits stumbling block in records lawsuit against UNC

The Daily Tar Heel has encountered a legal setback in its fight to obtain sexual misconduct records from the University of North Carolina–Chapel Hill in a case being watched nationally for its application of privacy laws.

Federal court ruling recognizes students' First Amendment right to make recordings on school grounds

Students have a constitutionally protected right to record the activities of school authorities on school grounds during school time, unless the school shows that recording will be substantially disruptive, a Maine judge decides in a case that could clarify the rights of student newsgatherers everywhere. 

Know Your RightsFind answers to all your legal questions

Copyright-safe materials available for republication in student media

Links to sites that offer downloadable images and music licensed for reuse

Taking photos and shooting video at protests, demonstrations and crime scenes

College campuses and their surrounding neighborhoods regularly are the scene of mass public gatherings, some celebratory and some enraged, some planned and some spontaneous.

First Amendment and Censorship FAQs

The Student Press Law Center answers your most frequently asked questions about a student’s right to a free press.

Get InvolvedMake the world a better place for student journalists

become a member

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.

spread the word

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.