The survey illustrated that high school students were not learning enough about
First Amendment issues and importance of a free press in their classes.
instance, 36 percent of students said newspapers should receive government approval
before publishing stories and another 32 percent thought the press had "too
much freedom to do what it wants."
the same time, a large majority of students said musicians should be allowed to
sing songs even with offensive lyrics and that people should be free to express
Daniel, a 17-year-old high school student from New
York City, said the press should not require government approval. He stressed
that the news media needed to be absolutely certain in the accuracy of their reporting,
but added that it was not the government's job to tell the press what news was
"correct" and what they could publish.
When asked why some students
thought the press should be restricted while musicians should be free to sing
whatever they wanted, Daniel pointed out: "Music is more of a recreation,
not a news source. And people have their own music preferences to avoid what offends
them. But, with newspapers, they tell people what's going on."
said he learned about the importance of a free press through Global Kids Newz
Crew, an online program by and for students at NewsHour Extra.
survey blamed the lack of awareness on incomplete social studies classes and a
lack of high school journalism programs.
More than half of the high schools
surveyed described their student media opportunities as low, but 85 percent of
school administrators said they would expand media programs if they had the financial
Liz Harper, Online NewsHour