the Rock Online

About

The Rock is a hybrid news program that encompasses both the online and print platforms. Rock Canyon high school’s Newspaper class runs both facets of the publication. We are dedicated to covering and informing the community of Rock Canyon and telling everyone’s story.

The Rock’s social media accounts are @RCRockMedia on both Instagram and Twitter. We publish breaking news and story announcements, photos of student life and polls to these accounts.

For the 2019-2020 school year, our Editors-in-Chief are junior Amanda Brauchler and senior Jana Seal. This is Amanda’s second year as EIC and she hopes to continue into a third for her senior year. Amanda also is an Editor for the Black and Gold yearbook and likes to participate debate and mock trial. Jana hopes to attend college on the East Coast and major in either political science, journalism or diplomacy.

We would like to thank all of our sponsors that donated to our fall SnapRaise event. We raised over $3000, allowing us to help pay for students to attend journalism conferences, print issues and buy new equipment for our classroom. Your support of student journalism greatly helps our staff.

If you have any questions, concerns or story ideas, please email them to [email protected]

Policies

The Rock operates as an open-forum outlet for student expression. It will not be restrained or reviewed by school officials prior to publication or distribution. Although Kristi Rathbun advises the media staff, all content is generated and approved by students. Students are educated in journalistic ethics, legal issues and writing at the beginning of the year. The Rock’s editorial board and responsible student staff members assume complete legal liability for the content of the publication.

Editorial Policy

the rock wants to promote students’ media literacy and educate our student body and local community. We focus on the impact of stories in our school and community. Through the rock, students learn about their community and how to disseminate information. Student journalists learn how to publish, research and interact with their community.  the rock is a publication by students and for students. We encourage your voice through comments and letters to the editor. Letters should not exceed 250 words. We also encourage you to share other coverage ideas, editorial cartoons, or photos. the rock staff opinions present themselves as editorials. We also feature a number of columnists and commentary writers. Their opinions are their own. First two copies of the rock are free, and additional copies are available for $2.00 each.

Student journalists may use print and electronic media to report news and information, to communicate with other students and individuals, to ask questions of and consult with experts and to gather material to meet their news-gathering and research needs.

The Rock and its staff are protected by and bound to the principles of the First Amendment and other protections and limitations afforded by the Constitution and the various laws and court decisions implementing those principles. The Student Press Law Center publishes information about these protections.

The Rock will not publish any material determined by student editors or the student editorial board to be unprotected, that is, material that is libelous, obscene, an unwarranted invasion of privacy, a violation of copyright or a promotion of products or services unlawful (illegal) as to minors as defined by state or federal law.

Editorials and Letters to the Editor

The editorial board, which consists of the staff’s student editors will determine the content, including all unsigned editorials. The views stated in editorials represent that of a majority of the editorial board. Signed columns or reviews represent only the opinion of the author.

The Rock may accept letters to the editor, guest columns and news releases from students, faculty, administrators, community residents and the general public. We ask that letters to the editor, guest columns or other submissions contain the author’s name, email address and signature. All submissions will go through the staff.

In the case of editorials or letters to the editor concerning controversial issues, the editorial board must determine the need for rebuttal comments and opinions and provide space therefore if appropriate.

The Rock’s editorial board reserves the right to withhold a letter or column or other submission and/or return it for revision if it contains unprotected speech or grammatical errors that could hamper its meaning.

Staff members will strive to correct errors prior to publication; however, if the editorial board determines a significant error is printed, the editorial board will determine the manner and timeliness of a correction and whether it is necessary. Most corrections will be published to the website, regardless of if it originates from print or online content.

Covering Controversy

The staff of the Rock will strive to report all issues in a legal, objective, accurate and ethical manner, according to the Canons of Professional Journalism developed by the Society for Professional Journalists. The Rock will not avoid publishing a story solely on the basis of possible dissent or controversy.

  • SUICIDE/DEATH: In the event that the Rock is tasked to cover a student/employee death, whether intentional or accidental, the Rock agrees to dedicate coverage to that person and the content should consist of unbiased reporting and pictures representing the person in a positive light. However, if the person is a victim of a murder or the focus of a criminal investigation as a result, then other photos and content may be permitted upon receiving consent from the family members of the deceased.
  • POLITICS: All coverage of political events within the Rock must cover both sides (conservative and liberal) of the issue in question. Political commentaries may be published only in the Opinion section.
  • ABUSE/PREGNANCY/DRUG USE/ILLEGAL ACTIVITY: When dealing with any of the following issues, the utmost care must be taken to ensure that neither any of the parties under discussion or the reporter is placed in any danger (whether it be physical, legal or emotional). Anonymity requested by everyone involved and, to ensure that their identity remains protected, groups of no more than two reporters should be tasked with interviewing the people involved with the event/activity itself. When dealing with a story of this nature, the story must be proofread by both the adviser and the editor-in-chief, in order to check for any sort of latent bias or evidence of editorializing. If the issue is extremely sensitive, the reporter writing the story may also alert the school principal prior to publishing of the issue only out of courtesy; since the story may provoke a negative reaction from both the student body and the community.
  • NEWS: All news topics (mainly involving briefs) must be written to inform their audience and possess the standard elements of a news story-namely the “Five W’s and H”-as well as quotations from at least two different sources. From there, it is up to the reporter to determine the length of the story and whether or not further reporting is necessary.
  • ART: Art must always remain relevant to the text it describes and must not be done in poor taste or contain any profanity or explicit language/content.

Photography

All photos published by the Rock are taken by staff members, mainly on staff-purchased cameras. Electronic manipulations changing the essential truth of the photo or illustration will be clearly labeled if used. Photos taken by staff members of the Rock and for RockMedia use are owned by RockMedia and their photographers. Individuals or organizations can requested to use RockMedia photos, but must first receive permission from the photographer and from RockMedia. They may then use the photo only if they clearly label the photographer and platform it was published on. If this occurs on social media, the person publishing the photo must tag (@RCRockMedia) and the photographer (if the photographer requests it).

The Role of the Adviser

The adviser will not act as a censor or determine the content of the paper. The adviser will offer advice and instruction, following the Code of Ethics for Advisers established by the Journalism Education Association as well as the Canons of Professional Journalism.

School officials shall not fire or otherwise discipline advisers for content in student media that is determined and published by the student staff. The student editor and staff who want appropriate outside legal advice regarding proposed content-should seek attorneys knowledgeable in media law such as those of the Student Press Law Center.

Final content decisions and responsibility shall remain with the student editorial board.

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