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Students’ Rights Vs. School Rules

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Some of the best years of your life are spent in school. No matter how old you are, or what grade you are in, you are entitled to the rights listed in the first amendment. This applies to students, in or out of school. The question is are schools taking advantage of your rights In the 1st Amendment, it says that you have the freedom of speech, religion, and press. Schools say that they make these rules to protect the student body and keep them under control, but in reality students would benefit more if the schools would let them show who they really are. Education gives pupils independence, yet schools are choosing their rights along the way. Schools are threatening the 1st amendment by limiting students rights.

The simple decisions like the clothes you choose to wear, are a symbol of your expressions and who you are, yet schools are making restrictions to these decisions. In 1969, there was a supreme court ruling that protects students rights to express themselves with clothing. Many schools are going against the 1st Amendment and the court ruling by limiting what students can wear. Some schools are going as far as making all students wear uniforms. Students attire is also protected by the fourteenth Amendment. Board members feel that some students will be offended by what others wear in the school environment. In reality, the only ones having a problem with this issue is the school itself. It should be the students choice of what to wear, not the schools.

Not only during school hours are students being effected, but also at graduation ceremonies. Graduation is supposed to be a celebration of each students individual achievements. The key word is individual. So why cant the students show their individuality by means of clothing at graduation Schools require all students to wear uniformed gowns during ceremonies. Some people say that what you wear can divide you into certain gangs, social classes, and conflicts.

What the school system doesnt understand that its the person, not the clothes that creates a problem.

In one case, Andrea Byrd, a graduating senior at Alameda high school, wanted to go against the schools dress code by adding a little ribbon to her graduation gown, to memorialize the twelve students who were murdered earlier that year in Littleton, Colorado. Her idea was turned down, and she quickly fought back by contacting the American Civil Liberties Union. In the end, Andrea lost her battle. Not to mention she wasnt going to alter her gown, she just wanted to add a simple ribbon, for a good cause. The school system is going to far regarding what students can and cannot wear. Schools are taking away the rights of the students, bases on their choice of clothing.

Not only are students apparel being limited in school, but students religion and beliefs are being restricted on school property.

Some people believe that prayer should not be allowed in public schools. This is wrong and unfair to those students whose religion is very important in their life. Unfortunately, this mistaken notion has extended to teachers, principals, and the school boards. Prayer is in fact allowed in the public school system: in school busses, at the flag pole, in religious clubs, in the hallways, and in the cafeteria. Why wont the school boards let prayer enter the classroom, as long as students and teachers dont force their religions on others Its hard to believe that schools allow god and other religious figures to be banned out of the classroom, yet they can teach students about cults, discrimination groups like the Aryan race, and devil worshipping. The 1st Amendment states the freedom of religion, so why doesnt the school officials understand that If a student has a problem with a certain religion, then he or she does not have to learn about it. This statement is not saying that students need to be taught religion in class, it just needs to be allowed freely in school to be practiced by religious students.

Schools need to stop limiting where and when someone can practice their religion.

According to the 1st Amendment, all students have the freedom of speech, religion, and press. The school systems are threatening these rights. They are taking students individuality by limiting what they can wear or even enforcing uniforms. Not to mention that a students personal religion and beliefs are being censored in classrooms. At this rate, students will have no more choices, and will no longer be individuals. Schools are taking students rights, and have gone far enough in their policies. Its time to fight back.

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