Authentic Applications

How one learns is just as important as what one learns. It wasn’t until college that I finally learned how, and if we can get that into the lives of people earlier I feel like this would increase the potential for societal growth. Having exciting curriculum creates engagement,  finding ways to make the subject interesting provides the value and makes the subject worth knowing. People remember the intention behind content, not so much the memorization of it.
I particularly liked the application of the first amendment in these cases, although I get the impression that teachers do not feel as free to express controversial view in lectures and readings as would be put forth from the Sweezy v. new Hampshire (1957) case.
Regardless, these I found interesting:
Barnette v. W.V. Board of Education (West Virginia, 1940): Enforcing flag salute on Jehovah’s Witnesses abridged their First Amendment rights as they considered the pledge an objectionable oath. The court goes on to say that all Constitutional privileges are protected in school settings (cp. “disruptive to the educational environment”).
McCollum v. Illinois Board of Education (Illinois, 1948): Forbids thirty minute voluntary religious classes on public school premises, court notes that the First Amendment “erected a wall between the church and state which must be kept high and inpregnable.” A precedent-setting decision for strong separation.
Sweezy v. New Hampshire (1957): Affirms First Amendment freedom of teachers to express controversial views in lectures and readings.
Pickering v. Board of Education (1967): Affirms teachers’ First Amendment rights to publically criticize the school administration in a professional and informed manner, an important “freedom of expression” ruling.
Tinker v. Des Moines Independent School District (1969): Court rules in favor of students’ right to express opinions on controversial subjects (i.e., armbands to protest the Vietnam War) as long as it does not interfere with normal school activities.
Wisconsin Board of Education v. Yoder (Wisconsin, 1972): Amish successfully sue for right to complete school after finishing the eighth grade. Court rules that the state must place First Amendment religious freedom above its interest for compulsory secondary education.
Board of Education v. James (1972): Teachers have the same rights and reasonable limitations as students with regard to freedom of expression in school setting
Bethel School District (WA) v. Fraser (1986): First Amendment rights to freedom of speech do not prevent school officials from disciplining a student for the use of lewd and offensive language.

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