Staff editorial: thank you to the administration for respecting our rights

We would like to thank the administration for supporting and respecting our rights as journalists

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Staff editorial: thank you to the administration for respecting our rights

JagWire staff

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Over the last 18 years, the student journalists here at the JagWire have been able to create and share content we consider newsworthy with our readers. The Kansas Student Publications Act has allowed us to cover light-hearted topics, as well as serious or controversial subjects. Either way, we’re extremely grateful to have been able to produce these articles and want to acknowledge and thank our administration for supporting our right to do so.

As heard in this issue’s special section, the Kansas Student Publications Act, passed in 1992, protects our voice and ability to cover topics that have been deemed “political or controversial.” Although administrations in states with laws that protect student journalists are required to withhold censorship, that does not always happen, even with these laws in place. Luckily, our staff has never faced some of the challenges that other student publications have.

After Salina Central’s The Pylon staff wrote a cover story addressing racism, a district statement was issued apologizing for “any hurt or disappointment caused by the Pylon.” Eventually, no fault was found on the journalists’ behalf and the district did come around to voice their support of the students, but this shows how miscommunication between the students and administration can cause problems. It also highlights any minor intervention our district could potentially use, but doesn’t.

Additionally, we recognize how lucky we are to be one of the 13 states that have an act that protects the rights of student journalists. We fully support the 16 states working to gain these same rights by passing New Voices legislation.

Because of the help, encouragement and trust from our administration we have been able to cover topics that have won us a multitude of awards. Both our newspaper and our yearbook have been inducted into the NSPA All-American Hall of Fame, and the JagWire has won three National Pacemaker Awards in the last three years. This would not have been able to be achieved without the support of our administration.

For years, a mutual appreciation between the JagWire staff and our district officials has allowed our work to flourish. We’ve always respected our administration, but more importantly, they’ve respected us and our rights. For that, we are grateful.

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