FREE PRESS/FREE SPEECH — A new bill by Senator Leland Yee (D-San Francisco) to extend protection for student expression to charter schools cleared its first test in the Senate Judiciary Committee today by a unanimous 5-0 vote.

SB 438 expressly states that California charter schools must adhere to
the state’s student speech and employee protection laws.  As noted by an announcement from Yee's office,

administrators at the Orange County High School of the Arts interpreted
state law to not include charter schools when they halted printing of
the student newspaper last September.

“Students in California,
and throughout the country, have a fundamental right to free
expression,” said Yee.  “It is quite disheartening to hear that
taxpayer-funded charter schools think their students do not deserve the
same rights as those afforded to students at public and private schools
throughout our state.”