Teen suspended for Facebook remarks but is it freedom of speech?
Question — If you posted rude comments about one of your teachers on a social networking site like Facebook and the remarks were then discovered by the school; would it only be fair that you got in trouble or are the comments within your constitutional right of freedom of speech?
That is exactly the issue in question at a California high school where a teenage student was recently suspended for making negative “fat” remarks about one of his teachers.
The controversy began when 15 year-old Donny Tobolski made a status update on his home computer, calling his biology teacher a “fat a**” who should stop eating fast food and is a “d*****bag”. The comments were reportedly made after the teacher “assigned more homework than usual” back in December.
The school eventually got their hands on the comments and requested that Tobolski take the statement down as well as apologize. He was also suspended a day for “cyberbullying” which is when the American Civil Liberties Union opted to get involved.
The ACLU claimed that the student’s Facebook post was “protected under the state and federal constitutions as well as the Education Code” and the punishment was ultimately lifted. The statement added,
“Schools have an obligation to provide a safe school environment (but) petty comments, insults, ordinary personality conflicts…don’t rise to the level of harassment.”
Do you agree or disagree? What constitutes freedom of speech online?
Tags: ACLU, Constitutional rights, cyberbullying, Facebook, Freedom of Speech, freedom of speech online, hateful remarks on Facebook, high school student suspended for remarks, student issues, violated of rights
motocrossktm436 on Saturday, February 26, 2011 at 10:25 am
idk lol if the student isn’t 18 yet i would probably have to say that he deserved to get kicked off facebook. plus any type of bullying is never ok
wolfgurl13 on Friday, February 25, 2011 at 5:51 pm
that teen had the right it is just freedom of speachn sheesh get it right ):
CaylieMae on Friday, February 25, 2011 at 12:24 pm
That is so stupid. It is a free country so let them go let the parents get to them as long as he wasnt at school there is a such thing as FREEDOM OF SPEECH you know.
Klamath_chick on Friday, February 25, 2011 at 10:52 am
seriously? suspened for sayin somethin on fb? oh wow, shoot i know ppl who say stuff to a teachers face but they don’t get suspened or given a detention…hmm well somethin in this picture just doesn’t belong here lol
alio-g on Thursday, February 24, 2011 at 10:44 pm
If it can’t be accessed from the school, which normally facebook can’t be, the school can do nothing about it. It is free speech. That is unless it was a blatant lie, which is pinishable by law.
richard_love123 on Thursday, February 24, 2011 at 4:12 pm
Dat’s sun f***ed up s#!t
SugarrCookiE on Thursday, February 24, 2011 at 4:44 am
smh, did the teacher SEE it and cry n ****?! She’s a grown woman and that little petty stuff he said shouln’t have really mattered. Making him say sorry and telling him to take it down and maybe serve a little dention would’ve been enough. How did the school come across his page anyways?! I think someone told on him…
Rea016 on Wednesday, February 23, 2011 at 2:56 pm
“provide a safe school environment” The shi* wasn’t said at school so wtf does it matter
ChristopherMACK on Wednesday, February 23, 2011 at 2:46 pm
That’s fucked up .. ain’t like he said it at school or to his teacher’s face .. he was at HIS HOUSE how df are you going to get in trouble for something you did OUTSIDE of school ?? smh
ITSDIEGO15 on Wednesday, February 23, 2011 at 8:33 am
freddom of speech i mean saying stuff liek that on facebook is just like it coming out of our own mouths so really its not a big deal.