The American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan has come to the aid of two South Lyon High students suspended for distributing an underground newspaper named, ironically, The First Amendment. Along with editorializing on world issues, the paper harshly criticized the school’s staff. The ACLU, which filed suit last week on behalf of the students, contends that the school’s student handbook contains no prohibition against distributing an unauthorized publication, so the suspensions were unjustified.
Dan Schaefer, a South Lyon junior and one of three creators of the newspaper, received a five-day suspension. The paper’s goal, he explains, was to give students an outlet to express opinions “you can’t say anywhere else.” With an eye toward college, the students hope the ACLU will at least help get the suspensions expunged from their permanent records.
In the interest of balance and free speech, News Hits called South Lyon Community Schools seeking comment, but none was forthcoming.Megan Frye is an editorial intern at Metro Times. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org