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[teacherartexchange] freedom of expression


From: Pam Wellington (loveart_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Fri Sep 23 2005 - 05:47:27 PDT

I teach high school so it is a bit different but it is pretty simple really.
  I do not allow anything "profane, obscene or inappropriate". I also do
not allow any drug images, any racist images, or any hate images or overly
violent images of any kind. This now includes the confederate flag. No pot
leaves, no "420's", no mushrooms. I know, I know, no mushrooms! Starting in
6th grade,unfortunately but realistically, mushrooms come to mean drugs. My
list is ever expanding and flexable. This year I have included any "Alice
in Wonderland" images. I know, it's literature! But to this generation of
teens it now means drug use. The term "inappropriate" covers anything else
you may not have specifically stated, incase one of your students decides to
get cute on you. Within these confines lies their freedom of expression.
So, boiling down to Simplicity the list is:
Profane, obscene, racist, hate-filled (includes any over-the-top violent
images), sexist, drug related, or inappropriate for age level.

Does this help?
Pam Wellington
Department Chair Art
Boiling Springs High School
Boiling Springs, PA

I teach art to 4th-8th at St. Michael's, an Episcopal K-8 school in Tucson.
I am in the process of developing a freedom of expression policy for student
art. It is a tough process because our administration want to regulate and
ensure "appropriateness" while I seek to protect my students' Freedom of
Expression and creativity. Our Headmaster wants me to poll other art
teachers, about their policies. Please email me if you have a policy
regarding acceptable content and freedom of expression at your school. I
really need to see other school policies to see if I am on the right track.
I would especially like to see the policies of other religious-based
schools, but any school policies would be helpful. So far I haven't found
very many schools with an actual written policy. Your help would be greatly

I'd be happy to share with you the policy I am developing, if you are

I hope to hear from some of the wonderful teachers on this art teacher
exchange list soon!


        Dawn Malosh,
      Art Educator,
St Michael's Parish Day School

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