From our School Law Attorneys: Navigating Student Walkouts & Mass Protests

To our clients, friends and school law community:

Below is a link for a guidance document from the NJSBA regarding anticipated student demonstrations on March 14, 2018.   As noted in the guidance, possible student actions include “walk outs,” and such behavior raises important questions regarding free speech, student rights and responsibilities, school safety, and student discipline. In addition, the ACLU has put out an “open letter” to school administrators setting forth a brief summary of its position on student walk out and asking administrators from refraining from disciplining students.

As opposed to a “one size fits all” approach, we believe that local administrators, boards, and communities know best how to address any possible student action.

We do suggest that our school districts plan ahead, and have a plan in place, if they believe that there will be student demonstrations and strongly recommend having a plan that that takes into account student rights, learning opportunities, diverse viewpoints, equitable treatment, and, as always, student safety.  If you have any question about any of the legal issues raised by possible student action or your plan, do not hesitate to speak to the members of the Cooper Levenson Education Law department.

Click here to read the open letter from the ACLU of New Jersey.

Click here to view NJSBA Guidance document.