Society

Student, Teacher Suspended After High School Newspaper Refuses to Print 'Redskins'

| by Michael Allen

Gillian McGoldrick, the student editor-in-chief for The Playwickian, was suspended for 30 days from her position at Neshaminy High School in Langhorne, Pa., because she refused to print the word "Redskins" in the school paper.

Tara Huber, an English teacher and advisor to The Playwickian, was suspended on Tuesday and Wednesday. Huber was the winner of the Pennsylvania School Press Association’s Journalism Teacher of the Year award for 2014.

The suspensions were issued by Robert Copeland, the superintendent of Neshaminy School District, reports the Student Press Law Center.

The controversy began in June when a student had submitted a letter that used the word “Redskins,” which happens to be the school's mascot. The Playwickian staff was willing to publish the word as "R------," but Neshaminy Principal Ron McGee told the students to print “Redskins” or not print the June issue of The Playwickian.

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Maddy Buffardi, The Playwickian's opinion editor, told the Student Press Law Center, “We all decided unanimously that we’re going to send the paper to print the way that we feel comfortable sending the paper to print.”

However, Huber was not in the room when the students made their decision and McGoldrick sent the June issue of The Playwickian to the printer without the word "Redskins," noted Salon.com.

Buffardi said that Huber was suspended for two days because she allegedly neglected her job when she left the classroom when the students made their decision.

In addition to the suspensions, Superintendent Copeland reportedly took $1,200 away from The Playwickian’s account.

According to The Intelligencer, student editors at the Foothill Dragon Press in California started a crowd-funding campaign on Indiegogo.com to raise $2,400 to replace $1,200 that Superintendent Copeland took away from The Playwickian and the lost wages from Huber's suspension.

Sources: Salon.com, Student Press Law Center, The Intelligencer