Survey Prompts Pulling of School Newspaper

Rob Daniel, Iowa City Press-Citizen, October 24, 2007

Several City High students are upset after school administrators pulled issues of the school newspaper that contained results of a survey about racial attitudes Friday.

The Oct. 19 edition of the Little Hawk was pulled at about 1:30 p.m. Friday following complaints from black students at the school, executive editor Adam Sullivan said Tuesday. He said City High principal Mark Hanson pulled the issues unfairly.

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The student newspaper published a survey of 350 students about their attitudes on race, religion and sexuality. According to the survey, 13 percent of those polled viewed black students unfavorably, while 2 percent viewed white students unfavorably.

Hanson said the survey, as well as an editorial pleading for racism at City High to be addressed, caused three “near-fights” between students Friday. He said he decided to pull the issue to promote student safety.

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Sullivan said the articles were meant to create discussion about race among students. He said there have been a growing number of black students at the school in recent years, a trend that has caused tension among some students, he said. While Hanson said he did not think the survey was accurate, Sullivan said he was happy with the newspaper.

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