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House of Representatives
Session of 2019 - 2020 Regular Session


Posted: March 25, 2019 01:43 PM
From: Representative Carolyn T. Comitta
To: All House members
Subject: Year of the Student Journalist
A free press is essential to the support and preservations of our freedoms. Student journalists play a key role in the civic life of their community. Not only do they report on important issues in the life of a school or school district, but as the number of professional journalists has dwindled, student journalists often also fill the gap in reporting on county, state and regional issues. Indeed, in 2014, a Pew research study found that student journalists make up 14 percent of the overall state House reporting corps within this nation’s 50 state capitol buildings, and that number is likely higher today.

With this in mind, my resolution will declare 2019 as the “Year of the Student Journalist” in Pennsylvania. This year we will recognize student journalists across this Commonwealth and our nation, to highlight their positive contributions in preserving and protecting our democracy through exercising their rights to freedom of speech, which is guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution and the Constitution of this Commonwealth. This year will also highlight the 50th anniversary of the 1969 United States Supreme Court decision in Tinker v. Des Moines Independent Community School District, which was a landmark ruling defending the free press and free speech rights of students.

Please join me in honoring this Commonwealth’s middle school, high school, college, university and other post-secondary student journalists for their role in exercising and preserving State and federal Constitutional rights to freedom of speech and freedom of the press.

Introduced as HR221