The Columbus, Indiana school board is expected to turn down a recent proposal by one member to have all student publications scrutinized by the superintendent. Not only is this a stupid idea just for the extra workload it puts on the super (after all, why pay newspaper/yearbook advisors when the super can do the job?), but the the whole thing smacks of censorship. After all, this was prompted by a high school newspaper article about "the medical and psychological risks of oral sex." My favorite line of the article is the asinine quote that's the end of the article. "Harmful?" An article about risks associated with a popular teenage sex act in a high school newspaper is harmful? Maybe someone should explain teen pregnancy to the shmuck. Now that's harmful.
The School Board member who proposed having all student publications be reviewed by the district superintendent before being printed does not expect it to win approval.
Bartholomew School Corp. board member Russell Barnard drafted the proposal after the Columbus North High School student news magazine in December published a four-page report on the medical and psychological risks of oral sex.
The review process is needed, Barnard said, because materials intended for a high school audience could end up in the hands of younger readers.
"We don't need to make sure these materials are suitable for all audiences, but they must not be harmful," he said.