Kathy Whyte/ WNBF News

Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo’s name is on a bill that would expand freedom of speech rights for high school and college journalists.

The Endwell Democrat is sponsoring the legislation with Senator Tom O’Mara creating the “Student Journalist Free Speech Act.”  If passed, students would get editorial control over their publications instead of giving school administrators the final say.

Lupardo says student reporters are the next journalists and having more control over what they publish will support journalistic independence and integrity.

The Act was penned as a result of a grassroots movement known as “New Voices” that was launched by student reporters and their academic supervisors.

The measure, while giving student journalists more of a say in what is published, still protects schools by blocking content that is “libelous, an invasion of privacy, or incites students to commit an unlawful act, violate school policies or disrupt the orderly operation of school.”

Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo photo