Mountain View High School’s student newspaper, The Oracle, is planning how to move forward as a publication in response to the heavy criticism from Mountain View parents in recent months.
Oracle staff writers, Abby Cunniff and Chloe Tarrasch visited the Beginning Journalism class at Paly on March 25 to address the backlash their publication has received.
The dissent started when some parents at the school raised concern about the paper after Cunniff, the paper’s opinions editor, wrote an article containing mature themes regarding safe sex.
“Some of the parents said that we were promoting illegal activity by writing this article,” Cunniff said.
Since the complaints, which were the topic of two Mountain View-Los Altos Union High School District school board meetings, the staff of The Oracle reevaluated its code of ethics and core values.
“We’ve had some moral code of ethics presentations to talk about what we think is ethical to publish, not just what we can publish, but what we should publish,” Tarrasch said. “We are just trying to be more purposeful with what we write.”
In general, the controversy over the article increased The Oracle’s presence on campus, according to Cunniff.
“I think we have a lot more viewership now than we’ve had in the past,” Cunniff said.
Despite heavy opposition, The Oracle will continue to cover controversial issues in the future.
“I think we are going to try to keep them [their concerns] in mind going forward,” Cunniff said. “But I don’t think we are going to tailor our content to them [the parents].”