Victory

Keep journalism as a class

This petition made change with 247 supporters!


Student-run InFlight News has been a part of Foothill High School since 1973, producing newspapers, magazines, and more recently, managing our site fhsinflight.com.

We pride ourselves in providing content of the highest integrity and quality with a professional approach to journalism and publishing.

However, our class has recently gotten the news that there is a high probability the class will be discontinued in the 2015-2016 school year, due to conflicts with class sizes. Twenty students have signed up for the class, but these twenty might not be able to take it next year.

Foothill Journalism gives a voice to the Foothill High School student body and we positively connect our fellow students with issues important to the school community. Journalism is a tradition and the face of the school, and it is best run as a class of dedicated reporters.

Ending this class for the 15-16 school year is essentially ending Inflight as we know it for the years following.

We are asking for your support in keeping journalism a class at Foothill, and if you would like to see us continue printing newspapers as frequently and as smoothly as we have been, we'd like to ask you to sign this petition.

Below is the full text of a letter to the school.

Dear Sir or Madam:

Foothill High School’s InFlight News has been a tradition of the school since 1973, the inception of the school. We publish the school’s monthly newspapers and magazines, including an annual Senior Issue every June to commemorate that year’s graduating class. As of April 2015 we have distributed five issues this school year, reaching out to the Foothill community in print and online at fhsinflight.com and only plan on producing more. We also produce stories and photos for Humans of FHS, a page that showcases students, analogous to the famous blog Humans of New York. The page has been an enormous success, garnering 130 Facebook likes within a day of its creation, and currently boasting 438 likes. We founded the site with Foothill’s Peer Advocates just this year, with the goal of connecting the larger Foothill community on social media. We pride ourselves in providing content of the highest integrity and quality with a professional approach to journalism and publishing.

Foothill Journalism gives a voice to the Foothill High School student body. We aim to serve as an open forum where we positively connect our fellow students with issues important to the school community.

However, our class has recently gotten the news that there is a high probability the class will be discontinued in the 2015-2016 school year.

We are asking for your support and consideration of keeping journalism on as a class: not only do we produce Foothill High’s newspaper, the class prepares the students for the future in a vastly different way than traditional classroom settings. The consumption of media has become an integral part of how we live our lives in the 21st century, and in journalism we study different types of news media and how it is written. The class itself is highly saturated with Common Core standards, a hands-on career preparation class that encourages students to seek out information and then to present and analyze this information in a clean, sophisticated way. Journalism is a class that promotes group activities, discussions between students of different grade levels collaborating on a project directed and created entirely by them.

Furthermore, we believe what we do in this class is necessary and integral to our Foothill community. The school newspaper is a face of the school: it is an important tool in engaging the community, dispersing information that otherwise might be harder to find on campus. It’s the first thing that visitors to our school pick up to find out what our school is about. It allows students to learn of events and people, teachers and classes, that they might not have known of otherwise. It shows the community outside of Foothill just what the students is doing and how they are doing it. Like a mirror, it reflects what our students do throughout the year. Like a window, it allows us to learn more about each other.

Our first priority is keeping Journalism as an independent class. We have considered alternatives: merging with Foothill’s yearbook class, becoming a club, but they do not measure up to the importance of the school newspaper. Producing the newspaper is a lot of work and requires a decent amount of time dedicated to collecting information, giving interviews, writing and editing articles, and creating layout each week. Merging with yearbook does not give us the space nor the flow of a separate journalism class. At the end of the day, newspapers and yearbook are two completely different vehicles of communication, requiring two different types of supervision.

A club, on the other hand, while feasible, is still not entirely reasonable. A daily class provides us with approximately five hours per week. A club cuts down our time to one tenth of its original amount: merely thirty minutes per week. The paper cannot be produced like it has been within a time crunch that severe.

Cutting the journalism class will not be cutting it only for the 2015-2016 school year, but essentially for the years thereafter. The paper has been at this school since the beginning, and it’s an important tradition to uphold.

Sincerely,

FHS InFlight 2014-2015 Staff



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