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U.S. Supreme Court Justices OK Censorship of Student Newspapers

January 23, 1988

The Supreme Court's decision in Hazelwood East v. Kuhlmeier (Part I, Jan. 14) represents the end of free speech and constitutional rights for high school students across the country. The court's decision against Cathy Kuhlmeier in effect legalized broad censorship of high school newspapers.

Despite what Hazelwood East, and now the Supreme Court, may think, articles on divorce, teen-age pregnancy, and runaways do have relevance to teen-agers. By censoring articles on these subjects, the administration denied the students their education.

As a high school journalist, I know the consequences that such a ruling can bring. A dangerous freedom has been given to school administrations. If students are not allowed to have journalistic freedom in high school, how will they ever learn to use journalistic freedom properly?

The censorship has already begun. Steps must be taken to overturn this mistaken decision. The Supreme Court must not deny student publications any right guaranteed to professionals.

JOANNA R. PEARLSTEIN

Los Angeles

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