• IB: Academic Freedom


    Public education strives to present, as objectively as possible, varied events, activities, and perceptions reflected in history, literature, and other sources. The District’s Profile of a Graduate prepares students for global citizenship and exhibiting social and cross-cultural empathy. Because points of view differ and biases exist, students must access materials that express a diversity of perspectives, demonstrate cross-cultural empathy, and practice inclusivity.


    A teacher’s responsibility is to ensure students have access to materials presenting diverse perspectives. Teachers should consider the relative maturity of their students and the need for guidance and help in studying issues and arriving at balanced views. All instruction aligns to adopted courses of study and considers language and cultural background, English language proficiency, and disability to present these materials in a scaffolded manner.


    In expressing a personal opinion, a teacher makes it known to students that the view is their own and does not attempt to bring students to a commitment to that personal viewpoint. The artistic expression of both teachers and students is entitled to First Amendment protections. However, speech or conduct of a sexual or hostile nature can exceed the protections of academic freedom and the First Amendment and may subject persons engaging in unprotected speech or acts to discipline under the District’s harassment and nondiscrimination policies, as well as disciplinary procedures.


    The Board or District may restrict the right of teachers to teach certain subjects or employ certain teaching methods where they deem such subjects or methods to be educationally unsound, inappropriate for the age or maturity level of the students, or irrelevant to any valid educational objective. All instruction must conform to state academic content standards and the District’s scope and sequence. The right to free speech protected by the First Amendment does not extend to the in-class curricular speech of teachers made according to their official duties. Accordingly, teacher speech in the classroom may be subject to reasonable controls as to appropriateness.


    • Adopted: June 28, 2001
    • Amended: March 29, 2022