LaGrange College understands that a hallmark of higher education is the freedom for students and faculty to engage in the interchange of ideas, even when such opinions are different from their own.  Consistent with our roots in the Wesleyan tradition, the institution supports John Wesley’s belief that “though we cannot think alike, may we not love alike?  May we not be of one heart, though we are not of one opinion?”  Acknowledging this rich educational environment fostered in the exchange of differing thoughts and opinions as well as respecting the institution’s longstanding commitment to the principle of academic freedom, there are limits on the extent of permissible speech, dissent, and/or protest on campus.  Such limitations are derived from the College’s core values as espoused in the institutional mission statement upholding civility, diversity, service, and excellence.  Accordingly, discourse on campus will be governed by respect for the institutional core values.

General conduct or peaceful assemblies must not: (a) interfere with the normal functioning of the college, including regular schedules or events; (b) infringe on the rights of others to participate in an event such as a public function, ceremony, or lecture; (c) endanger the health or safety of others; (d) damage or destroy property; or (e) constitute harassment as defined by college policy.  In accordance with articulated policies pertaining to solicitation and campus signage, events, and/or their publicity (i.e., posters, sidewalk chalk, etc.) must be approved by the appropriate campus official who has been given reasonable advance notice of the request(s). 

Concerning political activities, LaGrange College’s status as a tax-exempt organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code prohibits the institution from playing any role (either in support or opposition) in a political campaign by a candidate for public office.  While college faculty, staff, students and student organizations may naturally participate in the political process, the following are not permissible: (a) use of the college’s name or logo on any materials connected to a political campaign; (b) use of college facilities to raise funds benefiting a political party or campaign; (c) use of college funds to contribute to a political campaign or candidate, including costs associated with bringing a candidate to campus; (d) use of college resources, including but not limited to mail distribution services, copy services, e-mail accounts and/or telephone lines, for political campaigns; and (e) use of college property for the placement of signs (including flyers, banners, posters, stickers and chalking) endorsing or opposing candidates for public office.  While tax-exempt organizations may sponsor political forums, candidate speeches and/or debates, no candidate may directly or indirectly receive an endorsement or support from the institution. Political forums or debates on campus may only be sponsored by recognized student organizations and college academic departments/administrative units.