Arkansas State responds to DeVos’ remarks on free speech

Arkansas State responds to DeVos’ remarks on free speech
The education secretary noted the case of Arkansas State student Ashlyn Hoggard who was recruiting on campus last year for conservative group Turning Point USA. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File) (Carolyn Kaster)

JONESBORO, Ark. (AP) - Arkansas State University says the school is committed to free speech rights after U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos criticized the campus' free speech policy.

The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reports that DeVos mentioned the university at a Philadelphia event Monday while denouncing actions taken by some college administrators regarding free speech. The education secretary noted the case of Arkansas State student Ashlyn Hoggard who was recruiting on campus last year for conservative group Turning Point USA.

Devos said the student was restricted to a "free speech zone" and later removed from campus. She said "we are inundated with stories of administrators and faculty manipulating marketplaces of ideas."

ASU System General Counsel Brad Phelps says the school’s policies advance free speech rights. Phelps declined to comment further because of a federal lawsuit filed in December over the incident.

Information from: Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, http://www.arkansasonline.com

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