The student news site of The Harker School.

Harker Aquila

The student news site of The Harker School.

Harker Aquila

The student news site of The Harker School.

Harker Aquila

Policies and Procedures

General: Harker Aquila publishes features, editorials and news in an unbiased and professional manner and serves as a public forum for the students, faculty and staff of the Harker upper school. With accurate, timely and accessible reporting told through creative media, we inform our community on relevant issues in order to amplify diverse voices and spark empathy and understanding.

Corrections: If you find an error on Harker Aquila, you can email us at [email protected], DM us @harkeraquila on social media (Instagram, Facebook and Twitter) or reach out to any member of the Aquila strategic team. Corrections made to articles are described at the end of each article in italics. 

Takedown Requests: Takedown requests will be considered by the strategic team in accordance with journalistic standards, and requests can be emailed to [email protected] with the subject line “Takedown request – [Your name]” and the link to the article. Your request will be considered by members of our strategic team for validation. When ethical questions arise, staff members will refer to the National Scholastic Press Association’s Code of Ethics for High School Journalists and the McCormick Foundation’s Protocol for Free and Responsible Student News Media for guidance. Both were created to help guide students in the direction of responsible journalism. 

Anonymity: As a staff, we remain judicious in our requests for, approval of, and verification of anonymously­-sourced material. Anonymity will only be granted when the quoted information is necessary and cannot be obtained through named sources and when a student’s or source’s civil, academic, legal, or personal safety may come into question if their name is published.

Editors-in-chief must approve anonymous interviews before the scheduled interview. Requests for anonymity may only come from the source in question, through the reporter writing the story. Neither the reporter nor the interviewee may assume that anonymity is requested or granted. Editors-in-chief will grant anonymity requests on a case-by-case basis. Again, anonymity will only be granted when a student’s civil, academic, legal or personal safety is at risk.

Story Pitching Process: Prior to monthly story assignment cycles, staff members send in pitches on story ideas, and section editors and the strategic team assign stories. Community members can send in story ideas at at any time, and staff will take suggestions into account when assigning stories.

Pronouns: Reporters are required to ask all sources for their pronouns at the start of each interview, along with asking for permission to record, name and position when relevant, to avoid assuming a source’s pronouns. Sources are not required to share their pronouns if they are not comfortable doing so. 

Racial and Ethnic Identifiers: Reporters will ask sources for their racial and/or ethnic identities when mentioning racial and/or ethnic identities that would be relevant to the article topic, such as coverage of Black History Month. Sources are not required to share their racial or ethnic identities if they are not comfortable doing so. To avoid the “marking” of certain races or ethnicities while omitting other ones, reporters will ask all sources in an article for their racial and/or ethnic identity if racial and/or ethnic identities are being included in the article. We refer to the AP Stylebook for race-related coverage.

Prior Review: Harker Aquila does not allow sources or other non-journalism members to preview articles or other content for approval before publication. However, reporters may occasionally check paragraphs and quotes with sources for accuracy.

Role of the Advisers: An adviser’s job is to guide students in the practice of accurate, fair and ethical journalism, and to ensure that they have access to and understanding of the legal background of American journalism, including key legal decisions involving journalism and First Amendment issues. This core training also includes an understanding of journalism ethics. Choices about using anonymous sources are included as part of legal and ethical training. The adviser will not create content for any student publication directly.

Use of Cookies: Our site is hosted by Student Newspapers Online, an organization that provides news sites for schools across the country and owned by TBP Productions, LLP. The site collects “usage information” about your activities on the site including usage data, IP address and web browser information not linked to your Personal Information. It uses standard technology such as “cookies” for information on how you use the site, including how often you use it, the pages you view, and where you go after you leave. This information is also unattached to your Personal Information.

Copyright: All content on Harker Aquila is strictly protected by copyright laws. We allow use of our photos with permission and attribution. Contact [email protected] for questions about content usage.

If you believe that Harker Aquila or any user has infringed your copyright in any material way, please contact us at [email protected]


2021-2022 NSPA Pacemaker Winner

2020-2021 NSPA Pacemaker Finalist

2022 Spring NSPA Best-of-Show, Sixth Place

2021 Spring NSPA Best-of-Show, Fourth Place

2020 Spring NSPA Best-of-Show, First Place

2019-2020 NSPA Pacemaker Winner

2018-2019 NSPA Pacemaker Finalist

2017-2018 NSPA Pacemaker Winner

2016-2017 NSPA Pacemaker Finalist

2022 CSPA Gold Crown 

2021 CSPA Silver Crown

2019 CSPA Gold Crown 

2018 CSPA Gold Crown

2017 CSPA Silver Crown

2016 CSPA Gold Crown