Bill Would Improve Missouri Student Journalists’ Protections

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Missouri lawmakers are considering a bill to give student journalists more freedom by restricting the types of content school administrators could censor.

The bill passed out of the House in March and is awaiting debate in the Senate.

Current law allows administrators to censor anything they consider sensitive material. The new law would restrict censorship of student work to stories that are libelous, invade privacy, violate law or incite a clear and present danger.

Sandy Davidson, a lawyer and professor of communications law at the University of Missouri, says the bill creates some “breathing space” for high school and collegiate journalists to report important stories.

A similar bill made it out of the House last year but was never debated on the Senate floor.

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