Crafting Gentleness

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Stevenson High School officials halt publication of student newspaper,0,1175320.story

Administrators at Stevenson High School in Lincolnshire spiked Friday's edition of the school's award-winning newspaper because of concerns about stories on drinking and smoking by honor students, teen pregnancy, and shoplifting, the editor said.

Advocates of press freedom bashed the decision to halt publication.

"It is irresponsible to withhold this information so they can protect their fantasy image of Stevenson as a place where no one has ever gotten pregnant or shoplifted," said Frank LoMante, executive director of the Virginia-based Student Press Law Center. The paper's faculty advisers, Matt Lockowitz and Lisa Lukens, as well as the school's spokesman, Jim Conrey, did not return phone messages.

The ban is the latest rift between administrators and student journalists for the Statesman, regarded as one of the premier student newspapers in Illinois and the nation. Concerns about content last year led to the resignation of the paper's faculty adviser, Barbara Thill.


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