Mary Margaret Olohan, DCNF
An Iowa State University instructor’s syllabus warned students that anti-Black Lives Matter and pro-life viewpoints are “grounds for dismissal.”
Instructor Chloe Clark’s English 250 syllabus includes a “giant warning” advising students that only certain views would be permitted during her classes. “I take this seriously,” she notes at the end of the warning.
“Any instances of othering that you participate in intentionally (racism, sexism, ableism, homophobia, sorophobia, transphobia, classism, mocking of mental health issues, body shaming, etc.) in class are grounds for dismissal from the classroom,” Clark wrote in the syllabus, a copy of which was provided to the Daily Caller News Foundation by the Young America’s Foundation (YAF).
YAF was made aware of Clark’s statement through a whistleblower who submitted the syllabus through YAF’s Campus Bias Tip Line.
“The same goes for any papers/projects,” Clark’s statement continues, “you cannot choose any topic that takes at its base that one side doesn’t deserve the same basic human rights as you do (i.e. no arguments against gay marriage, abortion, Black Lives Matter, etc.)”
Clark did not immediately respond to a request for comment from the Daily Caller News Foundation.
The university told the DCNF in a statement that Clark’s syllabus statement is “inconsistent with the university’s standards and its commitment to the First Amendment rights of students.”
“After reviewing this issue with the faculty member, the syllabus has been corrected to ensure it is consistent with university policy,” the university said. “Moreover, the faculty member is being provided additional information regarding the First Amendment policies of the University.”
“Iowa State is firmly committed to protecting the First Amendment rights of its students, faculty, and staff,” the university statement adds. “With respect to student expression in the classroom, including the completion of assignments, the university does not take disciplinary action against students based on the content or viewpoints expressed in their speech.”
YAF Spokesman Spencer Brown told the DCNF that such situations “arise far too often within institutions that are supposed to be encouraging healthy debate and intellectual curiosity.”
“While it’s good that the university reiterated its support for the First Amendment rights of its students, it is alarming that a faculty member would think openly declaring her intent to silence dissent is in line with the practice of education or the Constitution,” Brown said.
He added: “Unless concerned students are willing to stand up to this censorship, higher education will continue to rot away.”
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