Rgs neighbourhood school dating controversy
The District Court dismissed the complaint on the ground that the regulation was within the Board's power, despite the absence of any finding of substantial interference with the conduct of school activities. The group determined to publicize their objections to the hostilities in Vietnam and their support for a truce by wearing black armbands during the holiday season and by fasting on December 16 and New Year's Eve.The Court of Appeals, sitting en banc, affirmed by an equally divided court. In wearing armbands, the petitioners were quiet and passive. First Amendment rights are available to teachers and students, subject to application in light of the special characteristics of the school environment. Petitioners and their parents had previously engaged in similar activities, and they decided to participate in the program.Students in school, as well as out of school, are "persons" under our Constitution.They are possessed of fundamental rights which the State must respect, just as they themselves must respect their obligations to the State.But our Constitution says we must take this risk, 337 U. 1 (1949); and our history says that it is this sort of hazardous freedom -- this kind of openness -- that is [p509] the basis of our national strength and of the independence and vigor of Americans who grow up and live in this relatively permissive, often disputatious, society.
School officials do not possess absolute authority over their students.Justice Mc Reynolds expressed this Nation's repudiation of the principle that a State might so conduct its schools as to "foster a homogeneous people." He said: In order to submerge the individual and develop ideal citizens, Sparta assembled the males at seven into barracks and intrusted their subsequent education and training to official guardians. The classroom is peculiarly the "marketplace of ideas." The Nation's future depends upon leaders trained through wide exposure to that robust exchange of ideas which discovers truth "out of a multitude of tongues, [rather] than through any kind of authoritative selection." The principle of these cases is not confined to the supervised and ordained discussion which takes place in the classroom.Although such measures have been deliberately approved by men of great genius, their ideas touching the relation between individual and State were wholly different from those upon which our institutions rest; and it hardly will be affirmed that any legislature could impose such restrictions upon the people of a [p512] State without doing violence to both letter and spirit of the Constitution. The principal use to which the schools are dedicated is to accommodate students during prescribed hours for the purpose of certain types of activities. 967) (expulsion of student editor of college newspaper). Tinker, 15 years old, and petitioner Christopher Eckhardt, 16 years old, attended high schools in Des Moines, Iowa.Petitioners were aware of the regulation that the school authorities adopted. It was closely akin to "pure speech" [p506] which, we have repeatedly held, is entitled to comprehensive protection under the First Amendment. This has been the unmistakable holding of this Court for almost 50 years. this Court held that, under the First Amendment, the student in public school may not be compelled to salute the flag. Justice Jackson, the Court said: The Fourteenth Amendment, as now applied to the States, protects the citizen against the State itself and all of its creatures -- Boards of Education not excepted. On the other hand, the Court has repeatedly emphasized the need for affirming the comprehensive authority of the States and of school officials, consistent with fundamental constitutional safeguards, to prescribe and control conduct in the schools. Our problem lies in the area where students in the exercise of First Amendment rights collide with the rules of the school authorities. There is here no evidence whatever of petitioners' interference, actual or nascent, with the schools' work or of collision with the rights of other students to be secure and to be let alone.