The Talon

About Us/Policies

The Talon Online is the online extension of The Talon, a news publication of Severna Park High School. We are a public forum with a student editorial board making decisions concerning its content. Newspapers are distributed throughout the student body at SPHS and to our subscribers in the area.  We are a member of the Columbia Scholastic Press Association and Quill Scroll International Journalism Association.


Editors in Chief

Shelby Chasser (’19) and Cece Streaker (’19)

Online Editor in Chief

Connor Killeen (’20)

News Editor

Greer Long (’20)

Features Editors

Matt Mangano (’20)

Sports Editor

Colin DeFeo (’20)

Managing Editor

Carey Cameron (’20)

Business Manager 

Carson Whitney (’19)

Opinions Editor
Melanie Reynolds (’19)

Copy Editor

Amanda Vu (’20)

Graphics Editor

Briana DeRosa (’19)

Sports Media Manager

Nick Carparelli (’21)

Staff Writers

Alice Bishop (’19)

Ainsleigh Cook (’19)

Parker Cross (’20)

Lily Dougherty (’19)

Toni Fiocco-Mizer (’20)

Campbell Haney (’20)

Holly Hutcheson (’20)

Emma Jeter (’19)


WHO WE ARE The Talon is the principle news publication and public forum of Severna Park High School. ASSOCIATIONS The Talon is a member of the Columbia Scholastic Press Association and Quill & Scroll International Journalism Association. It has won Gold and Silver Medals from CSPA. DISTRIBUTION Staff members typically distribute 400 papers to our student body. Magazines are available to pick up in the hallways, the main office and throughout the English department. Subscribers may pay $25 to have the publication mailed to their home. OPINIONS Views expressed in The Talon do not reflect those of the Severna Park High School administration or the Anne Arundel County Public School Board of Education. Signed columns or reviews represent only the opinion of the author. Editorials The Talon’s editorials will reflect a consensus of the members of the student editorial board. The subjects of the editorials will be determined by the editorial board. The editorial board, which consists of the staff’s student editors, will determine the content, including all unsigned editorials. Editorial ideas may be submitted to the editorial board by all members of the staff. Editorials should be sent to [email protected] or dropped off in the publication lab, 245, during school hours. No material will be published for which there is evidence that the author is using the paper for inappropriate personal gain. ADVERTISING Any student, parent, staff member or organization will be allowed to purchase ads. Non-students, businesses or any person not currently attending or related to an attending student may purchase ads, but the publication asks that those ads be business-related ads or be used to congratulate student or school successes. No ads will be placed in any publication until payment is made. Any business wishing to advertise in The Talon must meet district guidelines for obscene or offensive material. All copy or art will be judged by these standards. Any ad found to be in violation must be changed or it will not be published. The publication reserves the right to refuse any ad that is libelous, illegal, obscene, irresponsible, inappropriate or in poor taste. The publication also reserves the right to edit any ad before publication to ensure the standards and quality of the product. The publication may limit the number of type styles offered to ad customers and set guidelines for format and style. The publication reserves the right to edit all submitted copy or photographs. BYLINES All articles, graphics, photos, art, columns, pages, reviews, and other material creatively conceived, with the exception of staff editorials, mug shots and cut-outs will be bylined with the producer’s name. All bylined writers will be held accountable for their work. When more than one person has contributed creatively to a piece of work, any person who has contributed to the work must be bylined as a producer.


CORRECTIONS: The Talon always seeks to publish corrections and clarifications promptly after they come to our attention. THE PROCESS: Reporters and editors should promptly relay reports about potential corrections to originating editors or via the reader correction-request form. Corrections and clarifications to online articles should be submitted and approved via the editor correction-request form. When a correction is made online, the story editor is responsible for alerting universal, home-page and social teams to make the necessary changes to headlines and blurbs. The change should be made within the article and the correction should also be noted at the bottom of the article.


NEWSGATHERING ETHICS CODE: The standards and practices are as follows:

1) Endeavoring to verify the authenticity of user-generated content before publishing or distributing it, holding it to standards that are equal or equivalent to those maintained for content acquired through other means.

2) Being transparent with the audience about the verification status of user generated content (UGC).

3) Considering the emotional state and safety of contributors.

4) Considering the risk inherent in asking a contributor to produce and deliver UGC, including whether it incentivizes others to take unnecessary risks.

5) Considering technical measures to ensure anonymity of sources when required. 6) Seeking informed consent for the use of UGC through direct communication with the individual who created it.

7) Being transparent about how content will be used and distributed to other platforms.

8) Giving due credit to the owner of the content providing that consideration has been given to potential consequences, including their physical, mental and reputational well-being.

9) Endeavoring to inform and equip journalists to confront the dangers of engaging with sources through social media networks and the digital footprint they leave behind.

10) Supporting and assisting journalists who are confronted with graphic or otherwise disturbing content. Maintaining an organizational culture that enables journalists to seek help or speak out when they need to protect their mental health.


 ONLINE COMMENTS POLICY: We encourage readers to voice their opinions respectfully in regards to both the readers and writers of the publication. Comments will be pre-moderated, and may be removed if deemed to be in violation of this policy. Comments should remain on topic, concerning the article they are about. Brevity is encouraged. Posting under a pseudonym is not permitted. A comment will be deleted if:

1) The comment attacks a named or identified person or group unreasonably;

2) The comment makes readers unreasonably uncomfortable on the basis of one’s race, gender, religion, disability, ethnicity, sexual orientation or otherwise.

3) The comment attacks personally any school employee.

4) The comment contains excessive obscenities or sexual explicitness.

5) It is determined that the comment is made under a false name or uses another person’s name or e-mail address.

6) The comment threatens or encourages violence.

7) The comment encourages illegal behavior.

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8) The comment violates copyright or privacy protections.

The Student News Site of Severna Park High School
About Us/Policies