Prospective Online

Publications Policy

Student Publications and the Distribution of Literature

Preamble:

Students attending school in the Bryant School District may exercise their right of expression within the framework of this publications policy, as outlined in AR Code § 6-18-1203 (2015):

“Student publications policies shall recognize that students may exercise their right of expression, within the framework outlined in § 6-18-1202. This right includes expression in school-sponsored publications, whether such publications are supported financially by the school or by use of school facilities, or are produced in conjunction with a class, except as provided in § 6-18-1204.”

Student Responsibility:

Publications staff members in the Bryant School District recognize truth, fairness, accuracy, and responsibility as essential to the practice of journalism. All student publications, as well as the content of student expression in school-sponsored activities, shall adhere to the following limitations, which shall be enforced by the adviser and principal:

  1. Advertising may be accepted for publications that does not condone or promote products that are inappropriate for the age and maturity of the audience or that endorses such things as tobacco, alcohol, or drugs.
  2. Publications may be regulated to prohibit writings which are, in the opinion of the adviser and/or principal, ungrammatical, poorly written, inadequately researched, biased or prejudiced, vulgar, or profane.
  3. Publications may be regulated to prohibit writings which might reasonably be perceived to advocate drug or alcohol use, irresponsible sex, or conduct otherwise inconsistent with the shared values of a civilized social order.
  4. Prohibited publications include:
    1. Those that are obscene to minors, as defined by law;
    2. Those that are libelous or slanderous, as defined by law; 
    3. Those that constitute an unwarranted invasion of privacy, as defined by state law;
    4. Those that suggest or urge the commission of unlawful acts on school premises or the violation of lawful school regulations;
    5. Those that scurrilously attack ethnic, religious, or racial groups

Review of Content:

Publication staff members create all editorial content for student publications and choose advertising for student publications. When questionable content arises, the adviser and principal will review such content and advertising and make recommendations. When the adviser and principal disagree about the appropriateness or quality of material scheduled for publication, the Publication Review Committee (PRC) will be consulted within two weeks. After a recommendation from the PRC, the principal shall have the final decision. The principal’s decision should be reasonably related to the limitations as noted under “Student Responsibility.”

Publication Review Committee (PRC):

The Publication Review Committee (PRC) of Bryant High School shall convene to advise the publication staffs, the adviser, and administration upon adviser or principal request due to controversial content or other concerns. Members shall be appointed by the principal with approval from the adviser. A member shall volunteer or be designated to keep detailed minutes of all meeting proceedings. The adviser and principal may attend the meeting and may speak, but only committee members may vote on the official recommendation of the committee. Recommendations will be reported to the adviser and principal. 

The PRC shall consist of the following members:

  1. Student editor
  2. Parent of a child in the Bryant School District
  3. Professional journalist
  4. Secondary math or science teacher
  5. Secondary English or social studies teacher
  6. Secondary foreign language or business teacher
  7. Secondary fine arts teacher

Distribution of School-Sponsored Publications:

School-sponsored publications may be distributed on school grounds in areas and at times designated by the principal to avoid disruption of school operations.

Student Publications on School Web Pages:

Student publications on school web pages shall follow the same guidelines listed above, and shall also:

  1. Adhere to the restrictions regarding use of Directory Information, including not using a student’s photograph when associated with the student’s name unless written permission has been received from the student’s parent or the student if he or she is over the age of 18.
  2. State that the views expressed are not necessarily those of the School Board or employees of the Bryant School District.

Student Distribution of Nonschool Literature, Publications and Materials

A student or group of students who distribute ten (10) or fewer copies of the same nonschool literature, publications, or materials (hereinafter “nonschool materials”), shall do so in a time, place, and manner that does not cause a substantial disruption of the orderly education environment. A student or group of students wishing to distribute more than ten (10) copies of nonschool materials shall have school authorities review their nonschool materials at least three (3) school days in advance of their desired time of dissemination. School authorities shall review the nonschool materials, prior to their distribution and will bar from distribution those nonschool materials that are obscene, libelous, pervasively indecent, or advertise unlawful products or services. Material may also be barred from distribution if there is evidence that reasonably supports a forecast that a substantial disruption of the orderly operation of the school or educational environment will likely result from the distribution. Concerns related to any denial of distribution by the principal shall be heard by the superintendent, whose decision shall be final.

The school principal or designee shall establish reasonable regulations governing the time, place, and manner of student distribution of nonschool materials. The regulations shall:

  1. Be narrowly drawn to promote orderly administration of school activities by preventing disruption and may not be designed to stifle expression
  2. Be uniformly applied to all forms of nonschool materials
  3. Allow no interference with classes or school activities
  4. Specify times, places, and manner where distribution may and may not occur
  5. Not inhibit a person’s right to accept or reject any literature distributed in accordance with the regulations.

Students shall be responsible for the removal of excess literature that is left at the distribution point for more than five days.

The superintendent, along with the student publications adviser, shall develop administrative regulations for the implementation of this policy. The regulations shall include definitions of terms and timelines for the review of materials.