Freedom of expression

Freedom of speech, also called freedom of expression, is among the most important civil liberties.

In order for children and young people to acquire the skills and habits to speak freely and express their opinions without fear, thy need teachers and role models who encourage them to speak the truth about injustices without fear.

In 2004, young people from Europe drafted a European Charter for Democratic Schools without violence, based on fundamental values and principles for the protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms. The youth recommended that schools across Europe consider this Charter as a model through which they can work for the cause of democratic education without violence.

“It is up to all of us (teachers, students and parents and the whole society) that everyone has the right to freedom of speech without the risk of discrimination or repression.”

European Charter for Democratic Schools without Violence

This film shows that the school is still too far from developing a democratic school culture and hardly supports freedom of speech, expression of personal opinion and development of critical thinking.

Author: Tsvetan Tsvetarski, film director, student from the Secondary school “Ivan Vazov”, Varshets

Participants: Katya Zamfirova, teacher; Immanuel Goranov, Ralitsa Pantova and other students from the Secondary school “Ivan Vazov”, the  town of Varshets

Reflection questions:

1/ List all important international and national laws which specifically relate to the freedom of speech and freedom of expression.

2/ What can be done at school in order students to develop qualities such as critical thinking, free expression of opinion and public speaking without fear?