Free Expression and Education
Educational institutions play an essential role in sustaining democracy. They serve as crucibles of ideas, dialogue, and debate, committed to educating the rising generation as well as forwarding the pursuit of knowledge and truth. But amid rising polarization in the United States and around the world, educational institutions have become a site of conflict and challenge, particularly when it comes to the bedrock values of free speech and diversity, equity, and inclusion, and perceived tensions among them.
PEN America’s free expression and education program works to reconcile these tensions by working with schools, colleges, and universities to ensure robust protections for academic freedom and freedom of speech are balanced with advancements in diversity and inclusion, as well efforts to redress legacies of discrimination and inequity. Our team of experts engage in research, advocacy, trainings, public events, and youth programming, and we have developed specialized resources for college administrators, faculty, and students.
Texas Governor Invokes ‘Pornography’ to Ban Books, Threaten Criminal Action Against Librarians and TeachersNovember 11, 2021
PEN America Denounces Texas House Committee’s Investigation into School Districts’ Books on Race, Sexuality, and GenderOctober 27, 2021
PEN America’s Free Speech Advocacy Institute: Our signature certification program for high school and college students to learn about professional free speech advocacy
PEN America’s Campus Free Speech Guide: Principled, practical guidance on free speech and inclusion for college administrators, faculty, and students
Research and Reports
Wrong Answer: How Good Faith Attempts to Address Free Speech and Anti-Semitism on Campus Could BackfireRead More
Bring Us to Your Campus!
PEN America partners with schools, colleges, and professional organizations to facilitate workshops, convenings, advisory meetings, public events, and educational programs. We tailor these engagements to the needs and interests of particular educational communities and audiences.