This policy affirms the principles of free speech on The Academy of Allied Health Career’s (The Academy) campus.
- Constitutional Time, Place and Manner Restrictions. Restrictions on the time, place, and manner of free speech that do not violate the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution or Article I, Section 19 of the Tennessee Constitution that are reasonable, content and viewpoint neutral, narrowly tailored to satisfy a significant institutional interest, and leave open ample alternative channels for the communication of the information or message of its intended audience.
- Faculty or Faculty Member. Any person, whether or not the person is compensated by The Academy, and regardless of political affiliation, who is tasked with providing scholarship, academic research or teaching. For the purposes of this policy, faculty includes professors, instructors, lecturers, graduate student instructors and those in comparable positions, however titled. For the purposes of this policy, faculty does not include persons whose primary responsibilities are administrative or managerial.
- Free Speech. Speech, expression, or assemblies protected by the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution or Article I, Section 19 of the Tennessee Constitution, verbal or written, including, but not limited to, all forms of peaceful assembly, protests, demonstrations, rallies, vigils, marches, public speaking, distribution of printed materials, carrying signs, displays, or circulating petitions. Free speech does not include the promotion, sale, or distribution of any product or service.
- Student. For the purposes of this policy, an individual currently enrolled in a course of study at The Academy of Allied Health Careers; or, an organization that is comprised entirely of individuals currently enrolled in a course of study taught by The Academy of Allied Health Careers.
- The Academy affirms that students have a fundamental constitutional right to free speech.
- The Academy is committed to giving students the broadest possible latitude to speak, write, listen, challenge, learn, and discuss any issue, subject to limitations set forth in this policy, or in state or federal law.
- The Academy is committed to maintaining a campus as a marketplace of ideas for all students and all faculty in which the free exchange of ideas is not to be suppressed because the ideas put forth are thought by some or even by most members of The Academy’s community to be offensive, unwise, immoral, indecent, disagreeable, conservative, liberal, traditional, radical, or wrong-headed.
- Students and faculty are allowed to make judgments about ideas for themselves and to act on those judgments, not by seeking to suppress free speech, but by openly and vigorously contesting the ideas they oppose.
- It is not The Academy’s role to attempt to shield individuals from free speech, including ideas and opinions they find offensive, unwise, immoral, indecent, disagreeable, conservative, liberal, traditional, radical, or wrong-headed.
- Although The Academy greatly values civility and mutual respect, The Academy will not use concerns about civility and mutual respect as justification for closing off the discussion of ideas, however offensive, unwise, immoral, indecent, disagreeable, conservative, liberal, traditional, radical, or wrong-headed those ideas may be to some students or faculty.
- Although all students and faculty are free to state their own views about and contest the views expressed on campus, and to state their own views on our campus, they may not substantially obstruct or otherwise substantially interfere with the freedom of others to express views they reject or even loathe. To this end, The Academy promotes a lively and fearless freedom of debate and deliberation and protects that freedom.
- The Academy is committed to providing an atmosphere that is most conducive to speculation, experimentation, and creation by all students and all faculty, who are always free to inquire, to study, and to evaluate, and to gain new understanding.
- The primary responsibility of faculty is to engage in an honest, courageous, and persistent effort to search out and communicate the truth that lies in the areas of their competence.
- Although faculty are free in the classroom to discuss subjects within areas of their competence, faculty shall be cautious in expressing personal views in the classroom and shall be careful not to introduce controversial matters that have no relationship to the subject taught, and especially matters in which they have no special competence or training and in which, therefore, faculty’s views cannot claim the authority accorded the statements they make about subjects within areas of their competence; provided, no faculty will face adverse employment action for classroom speech, unless it is not reasonably germane to the subject matter of the class as broadly construed, and comprises a substantial portion of classroom instruction.
- The Academy will not disinvite a speaker invited by a student, student organization, or faculty member because the speaker’s anticipated speech may be considered offensive, unwise, immoral, indecent, disagreeable, conservative, liberal, traditional, radical, or wrong-headed by students, faculty, administrators, government officials, or members of the public.
Effect of Policy
- Nothing in this policy shall require The Academy to fund costs associated with student speech or expression.
- Nothing in this policy shall be construed as prohibiting The Academy from imposing measures that do not violate the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution or Article I, Section 19 of the Tennessee Constitution such as:
- Constitutional time, place, and manner restrictions;
- Reasonable and viewpoint-neutral restrictions in nonpublic forums;
- Restricting the use of The Academy’s property to protect the free speech rights of students and faculty and preserve the uses of the property for the advancement of The Academy’s mission;
- Prohibiting or limiting speech, expression, or assemblies that are not protected by the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution or Article I, Section 19 of the Tennessee Constitution; or
- Content restrictions on speech that are reasonably related to a legitimate pedagogical purpose, such as rules enacted by faculty.