Students are serious about changing the way most teens get their news.
Hunter Wood, a Seminole Ridge High School production student says, "I think a lot of younger kids just get bored by it.”
Ashley Pellicone agrees. “A lot of times my friends will be like, 'I saw that on Instagram and I totally believe it,' and I’m like, 'you know that's not true, right?' "
The Seminole Ridge High School students are in the production class and put together a weekly news magazine show. WPTV partnered with them for a nationwide project focusing on news literacy.
“We look at not only the big picture, says Rachel Clarke, but how us teens are affected by bills passed or news floating around."
Students chose the topic of vaping to investigate and separate the fact from fiction. They were aware that there is a problem but what they found was shocking, even to these teens.
Clarke says: “ We have so many bathrooms spread out across the entire school and they are planning during class of shutting down some of these so to better monitor them so kids aren't hurting their bodies vaping."
Throughout the production process, teammates worked together and with their teacher Earl Wright, a former news broadcaster. They built the story from idea to interviews to writing and editing. And along the way we coached and learned together. In the end, it was a partnership that produced much more than a news story.
The students said they liked to share their knowledge with people so they are as informed as they are. They say by doing shows like this with the focus on topics that impact students their age, they are hoping they will gain some interest in it.
It’s a collaboration that could lead to better communication, understanding and future students who are trying to be an influence.
Learn more: National News Literacy Week.