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Augusta County School Board shuts down discussions on social media pages

Chris Graham
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The Augusta County School Board voted last week to disable comments on social media posts, despite free-speech concerns noted by two board members.

“If the intention, as defined, is for a billboard or a newsletter, then I don’t have a problem personally with the comments being disabled,” said Lawson, who represents the South River District on the board, per reporting from The News Leader.

Lawson was one of the board members with the free-speech issue. The other was Tim Simmons, who ended up being the one in the 6-1 vote approving the policy.

Free speech is one side of the concern on this. The other side is people using posts about school events and system-wide news to vent about politics.

“Our board has discussed in the past that we don’t want a child going home who has access to this, seeing comments that adults get politically wound up about,” School Board Chair Nick Collins said. “So, that’s been part of the board’s preference in the past to do it in this manner. Do it more as presenting what’s going on in our schools.”

Chris Graham

Chris Graham

Chris Graham is the founder and editor of Augusta Free Press. A 1994 alum of the University of Virginia, Chris is the author and co-author of seven books, including Poverty of Imagination, a memoir published in 2019, and Team of Destiny: Inside Virginia Basketball’s Run to the 2019 National Championship, and The Worst Wrestling Pay-Per-View Ever, published in 2018. For his commentaries on news, sports and politics, go to his YouTube page, or subscribe to his Street Knowledge podcast. Email Chris at [email protected].