USA: Schools reverse radio station ban on buses

12 September 2016

Portland Public Schools in the capital of US western state Oregon have gone back on their ban of particular radio stations on public school buses, which included radio stations playing rap music, reported Oregon Live on 30 August 2016.

A memo sent out by director of student transportation Teri Brady on 9 March 2016 listed five approved radio stations that could be played on school buses, which only included the genres of pop, country and jazz music. The memo clearly stated, “the stations that are deemed inappropriate include any religious, rap music or talk show programs”.

Controversy erupted over the ban when the memo was circulated by an outraged parent in August 2016 who noted the ban left out two “major communities” as not only rap music stations were banned, but Latin music was also left off the list of approved stations.

A spokeswoman for the schools said their original intent with the approved list was “to limit student exposure to religious teachings, profanity and violent lyrics”. However, as of 30 August 2016, bus drivers have now been asked to use their “best judgment” in what is played on buses, while still limiting exposure to “religious teachings, profanity, violent lyrics and sexually explicit content”.

Christian music banned on Arkansas school busses
The school district of Siloam Springs in the state of Arkansas advised school bus drivers to refrain from playing Christian radio stations while school children are on board, reported 5News on 4 October 2016.

The decision came after a parent complained that a bus driver listened to a Christian radio station while transporting children and that it went against the law of keeping education and religion separate.

» This article was updated on 11 October 2016 to include the Arkansas school bus ban on Christian music


» The Christian Times – 10 October 2016:
Arkansas school district bans Christian music in school buses

» 5News – 4 October 2016:
Religious radio station draws controversy on Siloam Springs school bus

» Oregon Live – 30 August 2016:
Portland schools end ban on rap music, tell bus drivers use ’best judgment’

» The Washington Post – 25 August 2016:
Portland schools reconsider ban on rap music after ‘racist memo’ goes viral

» Oregon Live – 24 August 2016:
Portland Public Schools ‘rap music’ ban sparks allegations of racism

More from Freemuse

» 2 April 2014: USA: Open letter against censorship of hip-hop artists in Portland

Home / News / USA: Schools reverse radio station ban on buses

Check Also

Singer Ferhat Tunç potentially faces 5 years & 8 months in prison on charges of “insulting the president” for messages shared via social media.

Freemuse calls for charges to be dropped against musician Ferhat Tunç

Singer Ferhat Tunç potentially faces 5 years and 8 months in prison on charges of “insulting the president” for messages shared via social media.