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Sunday, April 22, 2012

Do campus writers enjoy full freedom of expression?

Referring to freedom of expression, or of the press, one may ask, how free is the campus press? Do campus writers enjoy full freedom of expression?  Campus press freedom could be determined by examining the student publication in the context of articles appearing in the pages of their paper. Absolutely, it reflects on the quality of the staffers whether they are of passive or progressive orientation. While it is true that writers sometimes impress readers, the latter likewise express their opinions to them.

To give the details of the functions of a school paper, this question is raised to place emphasis on the importance of it. What really constitutes a school paper?

First, a school paper underscores the importance of any published content, as far as the article is concerned. All the articles are printed not to degrade the name of the school but to put it on a high pedestal by checking irregularities through constructive criticism. Any comment verbally or non-verbally used to attack or go against the school is not totally destroying the image of the school. Thus, constructive animadversions upon the internal and external affairs of the school only serve as reminders to check irregularities from time to time–not destructive criticisms. 

Canons of journalism take center stage at all times. They also serve as a “moral guide,” not only the journalists but also the people outside of the media industry. There is nothing to worry about, as long as the writer’s conscience is very clear. In the end, nobody can question the campus writers because they follow what they think is right for the benefits of everyone.

Second, it paves the way to information taken from the different sources of newspaper, magazine or tabloid which gives emphasis to the so-called press freedom on the campus. It bolsters up the proposition of smooth journalism without any drawback to encounter and to agitate the mind of a campus writer.

If it is not properly disseminated and well-presented, the tendency is that it becomes complicated and confusing because of its complexity and difficult journalistic lingo and other linguistic diversities. It also helps in augmenting vocabularies and learning how to utter English properly using the window of journalism as the other side of communicative approach. Most often, journalism book gives us much information without really dishing out its key role to society, as well as its practicality of learning.

Third, it is in line with one’s creativity and comes from the writer’s mental infallibleness, based on what he observes inside the classroom, is not an impasse to his judgment to conduct such a journalistic propagation for the students in particular and for the learning institutions in general.

Fourth, it has the right to inform the public and apprise the current news, so that the people will be aware of the controversial issue which needs further perusal and solution in order for the community to pan out. 

One faculty member from the other school avers that campus writers must be tactful and Ma’am is right. But the article presented by this writer of this school paper did not tackle with delicate perception, the right thing to say or do without offending considering that the said articles got the nerve to print only the old issues bequeathed to us by the silent studentry. The articles never attempted to rise against the person that administers but against the system that is being administered.

As a matter of fact, writers who have broadened their savvy on dishing out information are aware of the consequences, especially in canons of journalism. To hark back, if a campus paper ought to make a distinction from the street tabloid, then it ought to be responsible. While the tabloids can contribute to the distraction of the students’ consciousness from the fundamental ills and problems of Philippine society, the campus paper must avoid the myopia of petty concerns detached from the wider situation.

It must be clear further about its commitment. Again, canons of journalism must be put into actions by committing something “prolific” in favor of the majority, i.e. memory or percipience that leads to significance and dynamism. They should be dredged up and studied first before writers are opted in journalistic genre to dish out interesting facts to the reading public.

The school paper is founded upon the realization of the right of the students to know. I believe that a free campus paper is a veritable publication pillar that will hold up the inviolable right of the students to know. A responsible campus paper must reflect upon the heart and soul of the campus life. Its editorials, its major articles, its feature columns, should be relevant and authentic education. It should be consistently critical of the school’s policies and system of education from the viewpoint on students’ legitimate interests and, at the same time, sympathy with the institution’s internal struggle.

The campus paper has no room for baseless and unfounded reports, articles and opinions. It prefers to publish issues and to let it be raised frankly and vehemently, without necessarily inviting any court suit for libel. If the school cannot allow maximum militancy, at least some critical, relevant, scholarly, factual and concrete pieces of research and reporting will do. It takes just a little skill to be able to deliver iconoclastic notions in very clear, respectable and acceptable language and style.


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Important Quotes for Teachers

The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires. ~William Arthur Ward. The best teacher is the one who suggests rather than dogmatizes, and inspires his listener with the wish to teach himself. ~Edward Bulwer-Lytton. A teacher's purpose is not to create students in his own image, but to develop students who can create their own image. ~Author Unknown. What the teacher is, is more important than what he teaches. ~Karl Menninger. Teaching should be full of ideas instead of stuffed with facts. ~Author Unknown. The task of the excellent teacher is to stimulate "apparently ordinary" people to unusual effort. The tough problem is not in identifying winners: it is in making winners out of ordinary people. ~K. Patricia Cross


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