‘Amplify student voices’
Student Advisory Board members on the value of scholastic journalism
Emma Diehl, J.W. Mitchell High School, New Port Richey, Florida
The value of scholastic journalism in my school and my community is that it allows for us to tell the stories that no major news sources would cover. Scholastic journalism allows for student journalists to train for their future career field, while also highlighting what is so special about their school. For students, it’s a chance to be recognized, and for journalists, it’s an opportunity to advance their skills, and even compete in regional and national competitions, as well as trainings, which look great on college applications.
Jennifer Xia, Northview High School, Johns Creek, Georgia
Scholastic journalism in my small suburb allows us to highlight the voiceless. Oftentimes, we tend to focus on the headlines and forget about the smaller figures that play a huge part in our community. With The Messenger, Northview High School’s newsmagazine, we have been able to share stories on those who may not have found their deserved time in the spotlight. As editor-in-chief, I have been able to help implement a new online news website, a podcast, and even a small publication for the local elementary school. Each of these has helped greatly during COVID-19 to share what needs to be said.
Emily Rivera, John A. Ferguson High School, Miami, Florida
This past year, I served as the editor-in-chief of my high school’s newspaper and the yearbook staff picked a few of our editors and asked what working on the newspaper has meant to them. For some, it was their introduction to the world of reporting, for others, each article served as their chance to explore a new topic of interest. Scholastic journalism has enabled me to speak and write fearlessly and I now consider journalism to be an integral part of my identity. I’ve seen scholastic journalism have the same effect among my peers; there is an inherent power in reporting the truth.
Paige Jansen, Ade-Desoto-Minburn High School, Adel, Iowa
The value of scholastic journalism is to help students develop a voice that they can use for themselves and speak for others who can’t be heard. It celebrates those who need to be celebrated and tells the stories that need to be told. It brings truth into our schools and communities, and lets them and others learn about the world around them. It lights a spark that can’t be put out, creating a passion that will follow them into life.
Grant Johnson, Rock Hill High School, Frisco, Texas
Scholastic journalism means connection to fellow students, the community, and the world. In my small town, there is no premier destination for news for the community. This absence left the perfect opportunity for student journalists to fill the community’s desire to be informed. This desire is the foundation of what journalism in my community is built upon. By creating a live broadcast show and running the town’s most-followed social media pages, we have created a place where any generation can come to find stories about community members or classmates, local news, and engaging journalism.
Calina He, Carmel High School, Carmel, Indiana
Scholastic journalism has opportunities to showcase inspiring people, educate, and share stories. Even with the rise of social media and the fall of print journalism, people still find their way back to articles and photos published by journalists for the whole truth. Many of my peers have learned about each other through HiLite’s stories and photos, emphasizing the role of scholastic journalism in my school. Journalism gives people a sense of worth–many who I interview feel special. Journalism brings the community together and teaches important lessons to each and every person.
Kathleen Ortiz, Kingwood Park High School, Kingwood, Texas
In my school and community scholastic journalism is very important because it has the ability to hold school and district officials accountable while also giving a voice to students who would not otherwise have one with the shrinking of community papers. We’re able to inform, entertain and educate our community in a way that is truly tailored to their lives because we are constantly observing and working to make our coverage the best we can.
Mizuki Kai, Bellair High School, Bellair, Texas
In January, a shooting at my school left a student dead. As journalists of the school, it was our responsibility to capture the situation and amplify student voices through interviews and stories. We had to be respectful while maximizing our platform to make stories heard. It wasn’t easy, but we held the power to record and tell. Our roles as journalists helped us scream the emotions being whispered.
Our response to this event highlights the value of scholastic journalism in my school and community: uniting the community and showing student perspectives that are otherwise left untold.