Student Publications 5-39.1

School Board of the City of Virginia Beach
Regulation 5-39.1


Student Publications

The following procedures will serve as guidelines for dealing with student publications.

  1. The sponsor will review all material to be published.
  2. Guidelines for the student publications will ensure that the following types of materials do not appear.
    1. Material that is libelous or defamatory according to current legal definition
    2. Material that is obscene
    3. Material that infringes on the health and safety of the students or that encourages acts that could impair the health of students
    4. Material that is inappropriate for the ages or maturity of students in the school
    5. Material that could cause a disruption or interference with the normal operation of the school
    6. Material that encourages students to violate laws or policies
    7. Material so inflammatory as to provoke physical retaliation
    8. Material that is a derogatory attack on racial, ethnic, gender, or religious groups
    9. Material that is descriptive of dangerous weapons
  3. Should the students disagree with the decision of a sponsor to remove material, the student staff of the publication shall have the right of appeal.
    1. A written notice of appeal will be filed with the principal within five (5) school days.
    2. The principal will convene a review committee within three (3) days of receipt of the appeal.
      1. The review committee will be established at the beginning of the school year at each middle school and high school.
      2. The committee will consist of one faculty member designated by the principal, the coordinator of student activities, one student designated by the principal, a student serving on one of the school's publications, and a teacher selected by student staff members of the publication.
      3. The purpose of the review committee will be to receive an appeal and to review all materials on which there is a disagreement.
      4. In reviewing this material, the teacher-sponsor or the principal will be allowed to present his/her views, and a student representative of the staff will present the staff's views.
      5. Decisions will be made by majority vote.
      6. The review committee will convey its written decision within two (2) school days to the principal.
      7. The staff of the publication or the principal may appeal the decision of the review committee to the Division Superintendent within five (5) school days by filing a written notice.
    3. Division Superintendent
      1. The Division Superintendent will consider an appeal within five (5) school days of receipt of the appeal. An opportunity will be given to both parties to present their views.
      2. The Division Superintendent will render a decision within three (3) school days following the hearing.
      3. If the disagreement is not resolved, the decision of the Division Superintendent may be appealed to the School Board with written notice within ten (10) school days.
    4. School Board
      1. The Clerk of the School Board will receive any notice of appeal.
      2. The School Board may appoint a Hearing Committee consisting of no less than three (3) members of the School Board to consider any appeal. This committee will convene within ten (10) school days of the filing of the notice.
      3. The decision of the Hearing Committee will be communicated to the appropriate parties within five (5) school days of the hearing.
      4. The decision of the School Board or its committee will be the final decision within the school division administrative process.

Approved by Superintendent: July 16, 1991