the hoofprint

Walnut High School | 400 Pierre Rd. Walnut, Calif. 91789

the hoofprint

Walnut High School | 400 Pierre Rd. Walnut, Calif. 91789

the hoofprint

Walnut High School | 400 Pierre Rd. Walnut, Calif. 91789

A call to support youth journalism

High school publications are an integral part of training and creating the future of journalists to investigate and report the truth to their local communities and beyond.
Stephanie Cheng
Freshmen staffers Taryn Schilz (left) and Lydia Wang (right) look through past newspapers to get inspiration for their stories. “Being in youth journalism, you’re able to feel more connected to other students in different extracurriculars,” Schilz said.

My high school journalism career began quite belatedly after a hasty decision to drop an extra science elective in junior year. 

With high hopes of finding a new campus experience in hand, Publications appeared to be the most exciting option on my course selection sheet, and with the encouragement of some classmates, I decided to break away from my science-filled underclassmen years and dive into journalism. 

Prior to joining, I had never done any sort of reporting or even considered pursuing a career in journalistic media, but after joining Publications, I became captivated with the craft, exploring outside Publications  through editing for a non-partisan journalism outlet and reviewing submissions for international literary magazines. 

Had it not been for The Hoofprint, I firmly believe I would have never found my love for communication and writing. 

Story continues below advertisement

Within recent years, many collegiate publications have come to the forefront as sources of breaking news for their institutions and local communities. The newspaper at the University of Texas at Austin’s, for example, sends students to report government coverage for statewide news outlets. At the Daily Northwestern, student journalists uncovered hazing allegations through interviewing former athletes on Northwestern’s football team that later led to the firing of their head coach. Student journalists at Stanford led an investigative report that revealed data fabrication and misconduct in research performed by the University’s president. 

The journalism industry has lauded these young journalists for their work, hailing them as the future generation of truth-tellers, but this celebration must go hand in hand with the high school publications that introduce and shape many of these college journalists. 

Journalism is forging ahead in the educational sector, particularly when issues and controversies must be addressed in local communities, like the reporting on new policies regarding parental notification and critical race theory bans in Temecula Valley Unified School District. Scholastic journalism gives students a chance to traverse the open exchange of ideas, thoughts and opinions of the student body that later produce informed, illuminating stories. 

According to California Ed Code 48907, school-affiliated publications reserve the right to publish content that is not defamatory, slanderous, libelous or false without prior review of the school administration. Thus, publications have the singular ability to open a forum of student expression, reporting factual on-campus news and shining a light on unheard voices. 

High school publications are often the unacknowledged champions of journalism. Journalism is a fundamental medium of communication in informing people how to make sense of the events unfolding around them. It is a craft anchored in inquiry that encourages students to approach uncertainty with curiosity. 

High school publications truly creates something meaningful when they produce a newspaper issue or curate a yearbook — and I think it’s made through the unending dedication and lasting attachment that student journalists have to their communities alongside their enthusiasm for finding and amplifying hidden stories. 

Walnut Publications has taught me how to be receptive to new outlooks, take initiative to investigate relentlessly, stay inquisitive and open my mind to so many perspectives from the student body and beyond. High school journalism programs have the potential to transform students’ perspectives and experiences. It has certainly transformed mine.

Leave a Comment
Donate to the hoofprint

Your donation will support the student journalists of Walnut High School. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
About the Contributors
Kaelin David
Kaelin David, Opinion editor
Hi! My name is Kaelin David and I am in the 12th grade, serving as the Opinion editor for The Hoofprint. In my free time, I love playing around with website design and reading literary magazines.
Stephanie Cheng
Stephanie Cheng, Photo manager and Media editor
Hi, my name is Stephanie Cheng and I am in 11th grade this year! This is my second year as the Hoofprint Photo manager and first year as Media editor. I am also in the Symphonic Orchestra on campus in addition to playing the piano outside of school. In my free time, I enjoy listening to music, going on walks and scrolling Pinterest.
Donate to the hoofprint

Comments (0)

All The Hoofprint Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *