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Ohio Scholastic Media Association

Ohio Scholastic Media Association

Ohio Scholastic Media Association

2023 State Convention Recap

Check out this year’s winners in the PowerPoint below

When more than 300 students and teachers fill the Kent State ballroom for the awards ceremony, the result will always be exciting! First keynoter Cathy Kuhlmeier, plaintiff in a Supreme Court case that has haunted her and also today’s student journalists, tells her audience to take a stand against censorship. Then OSMA executive director Candace Perkins Bowen announced advance contest category winners while names flash on the screen. (photo by John Bowen)



Help us kick off a new campaign

Seventeen states have New Voices legislation to protect student media and student voices! Why not Ohio?! Our OSMA state convention will include information about how YOU can and MUST get involved to get this passed here. We need your stories — especially about crazy, meaningless censorship — and we need your connection with state legislators — especially those who might sponsor or support a New Voices bill. Get started by scanning the QR code and answering some questions here:

Check out what others have done on the Student Press Law Center site.

Our keynoter told us what it’s like to fight censorship

Cathy Kuhlmeier was one of three students involved in the 1988 U.S. Supreme Court Landmark case Hazelwood v. Kuhlmeier. The case involved censorship of articles in The Spectrum student newspaper of Hazelwood East High School in St. Louis, Missouri. The school principal removed articles concerning teen pregnancy and divorce because he felt individuals could be identified in the articles.  The Court ruled against the students, which ran counter to the 1969 decision in Tinker v. Des Moines where students did not shed their rights at the schoolhouse gate. The justices determined that school administrators could, under some specific circumstances, exercise prior restraint of school sponsored expression. Unfortunately, over the years, many administrators have pushed that much further than the case really allowed.

Kuhlmeier actively travels and speaks regarding her experiences with censorship and talks with state legislatures across the country about New Voices USA in hopes to pass laws by state to restore rights to student journalists. She regularly teaches Zoom and Google classes with advisors and students from coast to coast educating them on her personal experiences with the case that can’t be read about in the textbooks.


 QUESTIONS? email Candace Bowen [email protected]

Here are your updated 2023 winners!


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