Illinois General Assembly

Previous General Assemblies

 Bill Status of HB5902  99th General Assembly


Short Description:  STUDENT JOURNALIST-FREE SPEECH

House Sponsors
Rep. Will Guzzardi - Steven A. Andersson - Robert Martwick - Peter Breen, Silvana Tabares, Carol Ammons, Carol Sente, Sonya M. Harper and Margo McDermed

Senate Sponsors
(Sen. Daniel Biss - Steve Stadelman - Jacqueline Y. Collins and Napoleon Harris, III)

Last Action
DateChamber Action
  7/29/2016HousePublic Act . . . . . . . . . 99-0678

Statutes Amended In Order of Appearance
New Act


Synopsis As Introduced
Creates the Speech Rights of Student Journalists Act. Defines "student journalist" as a public high school student. Provides that a student journalist has the right to exercise freedom of speech and of the press in school-sponsored media, regardless of whether the media is supported financially by the school district or by use of school facilities or produced in conjunction with a class in which the student is enrolled. Provides that a student journalist is responsible for determining the news, opinion, feature, and advertising content of school-sponsored media. Provides that the Act does not authorize or protect expression by a student journalist that (1) is libelous or slanderous; (2) constitutes an unwarranted invasion of privacy; (3) violates federal or State law; or (4) so incites students as to create a clear and present danger of the commission of an unlawful act, the violation of policies of the school district, or the material and substantial disruption of the orderly operation of the school. Provides that an employee of a school district shall not be dismissed, suspended, disciplined, reassigned, transferred, or otherwise retaliated against solely for acting to protect a student journalist engaged in conduct authorized under the Act. Effective immediately.

House Floor Amendment No. 1
Provides that the appropriate student journalist (rather than a student journalist) shall be responsible for determining the content of school-sponsored media. Sets forth provisions concerning the prior restraint of material. Provides that the Act does not authorize or protect expression by a student journalist that is libelous, slanderous, or obscene (rather than libelous or slanderous). Removes provisions concerning protections for authorized conduct. Provides that no expression made by students in the exercise of freedom of speech or freedom of the press shall be deemed to be an expression of school policy, and no school district or employee or parent, legal guardian, or official of the school district shall be held liable in any civil or criminal action for any expression made or published by students.

Senate Committee Amendment No. 1
Provides that immunity from liability under the Act applies except in cases of willful or wanton conduct.

Senate Floor Amendment No. 3
Provides that the Act does not authorize or protect expression that incites students to commit an unlawful act, to violate policies of the school district, or to materially and substantially disrupt the orderly operation of the school (rather than expression that so incites students as to create a clear and present danger of the commission of an unlawful act, the violation of policies of the school district, or the material and substantial disruption of the orderly operation of the school). Defines "school official". Makes other changes.

Actions 
DateChamber Action
  2/11/2016HouseFiled with the Clerk by Rep. Will Guzzardi
  2/11/2016HouseFirst Reading
  2/11/2016HouseReferred to Rules Committee
  2/23/2016HouseAssigned to Judiciary - Civil Committee
  4/6/2016HouseDo Pass / Short Debate Judiciary - Civil Committee; 011-000-000
  4/7/2016HousePlaced on Calendar 2nd Reading - Short Debate
  4/12/2016HouseAdded Chief Co-Sponsor Rep. Steven A. Andersson
  4/12/2016HouseAdded Chief Co-Sponsor Rep. Robert Martwick
  4/12/2016HouseAdded Co-Sponsor Rep. Silvana Tabares
  4/13/2016HouseHouse Floor Amendment No. 1 Filed with Clerk by Rep. Will Guzzardi
  4/13/2016HouseHouse Floor Amendment No. 1 Referred to Rules Committee
  4/13/2016HouseAdded Chief Co-Sponsor Rep. Peter Breen
  4/14/2016HouseHouse Floor Amendment No. 1 Rules Refers to Judiciary - Civil Committee
  4/15/2016HouseHouse Floor Amendment No. 1 Recommends Be Adopted Judiciary - Civil Committee; 011-000-000
  4/15/2016HouseSecond Reading - Short Debate
  4/15/2016HouseHouse Floor Amendment No. 1 Adopted
  4/15/2016HousePlaced on Calendar Order of 3rd Reading - Short Debate
  4/19/2016HouseThird Reading - Short Debate - Passed 114-000-000
  4/19/2016HouseAdded Co-Sponsor Rep. Carol Ammons
  4/19/2016HouseAdded Co-Sponsor Rep. Carol Sente
  4/19/2016HouseAdded Co-Sponsor Rep. Sonya M. Harper
  4/19/2016SenateArrive in Senate
  4/19/2016SenatePlaced on Calendar Order of First Reading April 20, 2016
  4/19/2016HouseAdded Co-Sponsor Rep. Margo McDermed
  4/19/2016SenateChief Senate Sponsor Sen. Daniel Biss
  4/20/2016SenateFirst Reading
  4/20/2016SenateReferred to Assignments
  5/3/2016SenateAssigned to Judiciary
  5/5/2016SenateSenate Committee Amendment No. 1 Filed with Secretary by Sen. Daniel Biss
  5/5/2016SenateSenate Committee Amendment No. 1 Referred to Assignments
  5/10/2016SenateSenate Committee Amendment No. 1 Assignments Refers to Judiciary
  5/10/2016SenateSenate Committee Amendment No. 1 Adopted
  5/11/2016SenateDo Pass as Amended Judiciary; 011-000-000
  5/11/2016SenatePlaced on Calendar Order of 2nd Reading May 12, 2016
  5/18/2016SenateAdded as Alternate Chief Co-Sponsor Sen. Steve Stadelman
  5/18/2016SenateSenate Floor Amendment No. 2 Filed with Secretary by Sen. Daniel Biss
  5/18/2016SenateSenate Floor Amendment No. 2 Referred to Assignments
  5/19/2016SenateSenate Floor Amendment No. 3 Filed with Secretary by Sen. Daniel Biss
  5/19/2016SenateSenate Floor Amendment No. 3 Referred to Assignments
  5/19/2016SenateAdded as Alternate Co-Sponsor Sen. Napoleon Harris, III
  5/24/2016SenateAdded as Alternate Chief Co-Sponsor Sen. Jacqueline Y. Collins
  5/24/2016SenateSenate Floor Amendment No. 3 Assignments Refers to Judiciary
  5/24/2016SenateSenate Floor Amendment No. 2 Pursuant to Senate Rule 3-8(b-1), this amendment will remain in the Committee on Assignments.
  5/25/2016SenateSenate Floor Amendment No. 3 Recommend Do Adopt Judiciary; 010-000-000
  5/25/2016SenateSecond Reading
  5/25/2016SenateSenate Floor Amendment No. 3 Adopted; Biss
  5/25/2016SenatePlaced on Calendar Order of 3rd Reading May 26, 2016
  5/27/2016SenateThird Reading - Passed; 051-000-001
  5/27/2016SenateSenate Floor Amendment No. 2 Tabled Pursuant to Rule 5-4(a)
  5/29/2016HouseArrived in House
  5/29/2016HousePlaced on Calendar Order of Concurrence Senate Amendment(s) 1, 3
  5/29/2016HouseSenate Committee Amendment No. 1 Motion Filed Concur Rep. Will Guzzardi
  5/29/2016HouseSenate Floor Amendment No. 3 Motion Filed Concur Rep. Will Guzzardi
  5/29/2016HouseSenate Committee Amendment No. 1 Motion to Concur Referred to Rules Committee
  5/29/2016HouseSenate Floor Amendment No. 3 Motion to Concur Referred to Rules Committee
  5/30/2016HouseSenate Committee Amendment No. 1 Motion to Concur Rules Referred to Judiciary - Civil Committee
  5/30/2016HouseSenate Floor Amendment No. 3 Motion to Concur Rules Referred to Judiciary - Civil Committee
  5/30/2016HouseSenate Committee Amendment No. 1 Motion to Concur Recommends Be Adopted Judiciary - Civil Committee; 011-000-000
  5/30/2016HouseSenate Floor Amendment No. 3 Motion to Concur Recommends Be Adopted Judiciary - Civil Committee; 011-000-000
  5/31/2016HouseSenate Committee Amendment No. 1 House Concurs 117-000-000
  5/31/2016HouseSenate Floor Amendment No. 3 House Concurs 117-000-000
  5/31/2016HouseHouse Concurs
  5/31/2016HousePassed Both Houses
  6/27/2016HouseSent to the Governor
  7/29/2016HouseGovernor Approved
  7/29/2016HouseEffective Date July 29, 2016
  7/29/2016HousePublic Act . . . . . . . . . 99-0678

Back To Top