The Talon: CVCHS Newspaper

These are my clips from my time as staff writer and editor in chief for my high school’s newspaper, The Talon. The articles were written between 2013 and 2015. 

Seniors take to Twitter to recap their senior year in five words

As the school year has come to an end, seniors around the world have utilized social media as a platform to share their thoughts on senior year. The hashtag #SeniorYearIn5Words quickly became a trending topic on Twitter as students took the challenge to summarize their senior year in just five words.

While some students chose to share sentimental thoughts, a majority of tweets were considered humorous. Opinions of class work, tests, attendance, and teachers quickly became relatable messages to the Class of 2015.

Read more here (see page 3).

CV students sign National Letters of Intent

Clayton Valley Charter High School has once again had some of its very own Ugly Eagles sign Letters of Intent with prestigious universities. Seniors Kahlil McKenzie and Hailey Pascoe were honored in a national signing day ceremony on February 4th, 2015, committing to University of Tennessee and Lehigh University, respectively. In signing Letters of Intent, the two student-athletes made binding agreements to attend academic institutions and play for their sports teams.

Kahlil committed to play football with University of Tennessee, where his father also attended and played. Despite his ineligibility to participate in Clayton Valley’s football program his senior year, Kahlil’s athletic career at De La Salle High School as well as his participation in the 2014 Army All-American game were enough to prove his talent. He received offers from countless schools, including University of Alabama, University of Southern California, and University of Oklahoma. Read more here (see page 1).

Students’ gratitude continuing after the holidays

In the United States, Americans celebrate the traditional holiday of Thanksgiving in order to “give thanks” and show gratitude for the privileges they have received in the past year. Yet with the hustle and bustle of today’s modern world, does anyone actually sit down and take the time to realize all of the things they have to be grateful for?

With the distractions of work, technology, and expectations constantly surrounding the average person, it seems as if the definition of “Thanksgiving” has lost its meaning. Subsequently, now is the time to remember the importance of being thankful, not only to recognize the holiday season, but to instill an attitude of gratitude within our society. Read more here (see page 1).

College: can you afford it?

Since the beginning of your high school career, you’ve probably never stopped dreaming of the day you would graduate. With all the hard work you have accomplished, you deserve all of the freedoms you get as you approach young adulthood. As one chapter ends, another one must begin, right?

Like 65.9% of American teens according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, you might decide to go to college and receive a secondary education. But before you can make that decision, can you even really afford it? Read more here (see page 7).

Students use summer as opportunity to see the world

Summer is the season that gives students of all ages their freedom. Friends to see, beaches to visit, roller coasters to ride; kids across the country will be seeking their own summer time adventures, leaving school and stress behind.

Traveling is a huge part of many summer plans. Whether it is a local trip or an international journey, students will take the summer as an opportunity to experience life outside of their hometown. Many students at Clayton Valley are planning to travel overseas to visit family and experience cultures firsthand. Read more here (see page 3).

Scheduling conflict between AP testing and Every 15 Minutes

On May 6th, two significant events will be occurring on the Clayton Valley campus – as long as circumstances remain the same. One of those events is the Every 15 Minutes simulation, which takes place every two years and involves juniors and seniors. The presentation demonstrates the severe consequences of being under the influence and driving.

Also on this date will be the AP testing of several subjects including Spanish Language, Computer Science, and Art History. Other subjects will be doing their testing up until May 16th. Both events are set to take place on campus, which has caused contention between students and the administration. Read more here (see page 3).

Common Core makes common sense

Common Core testing is not only happening here at CVCHS, but all across the nation for the first time in history. The 2013-2014 school year is being nicknamed the “pilot year” for this new version of in depth standardized testing which will be replacing the annual STAR testing in California. So what is Common Core?

According to the mission statement of, “The Common Core state standards provide a consistent, clear understanding of what students are expected to learn, so teachers and parents know what they need to do to help them.” These tests are based upon the new state standards in which California implemented back in 2010. Read more here (see page 1). 

Gun control laws necessary indeed

With an estimated 283 million guns in civilian hands, the United States experiences over ten thousand gun homicides annually, leaving the country ranked fairly high in this category worldwide. However, California has some of the strictest gun laws amongst the states and has experienced a 56% decrease in gunfire killings since 1993. The current gun laws that are in place in the state of California have proven to be successful, so why not continue with the regulations and continue to lower the statistic?

Many gun owners stand in the way of dropping such rates as gun control laws are quite frequently equated to stripping away American citizens’ 2nd Amendment right to bear arms. But gun owners are still treated equally as citizens and they can still own their guns as long as they meet the proper requirements to do so. Read more here (see page 7).

Wacky bell schedule leaves students confused

Imagine an exhausted student who spent the whole night doing his homework. He arrives to school with only minutes before the bell rings. At his locker, he grabs his books and walks to his first class. He takes his seat as the bell rings and suddenly realizes it’s a block day; the class periods are out of order at Clayton Valley Charter High School.

The bell schedule on block days leaves the students in confusion. The Wednesday schedule contains classes 2, 3, and 1 leaving Thursday with classes 5, 4, and 6. One would think it would be easier to have those class periods in numerical order. Matthew Mullins, a junior at CV, admits that the current block day schedules are “confusing to understand” and that it has taken him some time to get used to them. Read more here (see page 7).