Students' restricted expression

by: Elvina Malkoc

Should student expression be restricted?

No, student expression should not be restricted because it infringes upon students free speech rights, it may cause social and academic problems, and may even lead to troubled kids.

Is the "Zero Tolerance" rule achieving it's goal of making school a safer environment?

No, it is not. With evidence from articles, schools actually increase the risk of students having social and academic problems along with harsh punishments for minor offenses.

No child left behind... or is there?

Along with the other negative effects of zero tolerance rules, children are disproportionately being singled out for harsh disciplinary measures. When in fact, school is suppose to be a place where you can feel safe, and supported. Schools supporting the zero tolerance rule are giving off the wrong impression. Children, no matter the circumstances, should never be told or felt like they are unequal or "not as good" as everyone else. Schools shape childrens' future representations of themselves and self esteem. If their self confidence is low at a young age, it will only get worse as they age, which may lead to drugs, self harm, dropping out of school, or even suicide.

Lost learning time

"In recent years, secondary schools have suspended or expelled an estimated two million students a year. That is a staggering amount of lost learning time--and lost opportunity to provide support."

Not only will you lose the time to educate and help the student, but you will also increase the chances of the child developing anger issues or the belief that "everyone is against them"

Respecting the rights of others

Schools are saying that student expression are needed to be restricted for the sake of protecting others' rights. If every ones rights are wanted to be respected, then restricting the expression of students wouldn't make sense. Because then you would be infringing on that students' freedom of speech rights.
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ProQuest Staff. "At Issue: Student Expression and School Discipline." ProQuest LLC. 2014: n.pag. SIRS Issues Researcher. Web. 10 Feb. 2014.

Duncan, Arne. "Rethinking School Discipline." United States Department of Education News. 08 Jan. 2014: n.p. SIRS Government Reporter. Web. 10 Feb. 2014.

"Zero Tolerance, Reconsidered." New York Times. 06 Jan. 2014: A.18. SIRS Issues Researcher. Web. 10 Feb. 2014.