Petitioners, all officers of the Supreme Student Council of the Gregorio Araneta University Foundation, sought and were granted a permit to hold a meeting. At such gathering they manifested their opposition to the proposed merger of the Institute of Animal Science with the Institute of Agriculture. They marched and demonstrated outside the place indicated in the permit, disturbing the classes being held. They were later suspended for one academic year for holding an illegal assembly.
Whether or not there was an infringement of the right to peaceable assembly and its cognate right of free speech in the disciplinary action and the penalty imposed.
YES. Petitioners are entitled to their rights to peaceable assembly and free speech. They enjoy like the rest of the citizens the freedom to express their views and communicate their thoughts to those disposed to listen in gatherings. While the authority of educational institutions over the conduct of students must be recognized, it cannot go so far as to be violative of constitutional safeguards.
Petition is GRANTED.