The Southwest Shadow was founded in January 2010 and strives to provide an accessible news source for students, parents and the outlying community of Las Vegas. We are proud members of NSPA, JEA, CSPA, SNSJ, and Quill & Scroll.
The Southwest Shadow operates as a public open forum that provides information and entertainment in addition to various viewpoints on debatable issues in the form of editorials and columns. The content of the Southwest Shadow is determined by, and reflects only the views of, the student staff and is not endorsed by school officials, the school itself, or the Clark County School District. Prior review is not in practice at Southwest Career and Technical Academy.
The mission of the Southwest Shadow is simple: Post news that is relevant to our school and the local community. If it is not relevant, then we are not accomplishing our goals.
After completing distance learning for most of the 2021 school year, SWCTA is back to face-to-face learning for the 2022 school year. While the publication managed to continue meeting its mission statement as much as possible, this did not come without consequences. As such, the Southwest Shadow staff will be spending the first few weeks of school re-acclimating and re-teaching old and new staff members.
As such, the Southwest Shadow will still make every effort to publish new content daily. Regular daily posting for the 2022 school year will begin on September 7, 2021. Production is modified during Fall Break (November 22-26) Winter Break (December 20 – January 4) and Spring Break (April 11 – April 15). The final regular postings for the 2022 school year will be May 13. These dates are based on the current school calendar and will be modified as updated information regarding the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on school operations.
In-depth storytelling is important to the mission of our publication, but with a small staff, these stories do take a long time to produce. Because of this, our goal for the 2022 school year is to post one each semester. The first was published in December and the next longform will be posted in fourth quarter. Planning has started, with the ongoing battle against COVID-19, it’s made it very difficult to complete the kind of responsible reporting necessary to make these stories happen at the quality level expected.
For the 2022 school year, a staff of 25 will be enrolled in Journalism II to produce the Southwest Shadow online news site. Of the 25 staff members, 12 are new to the program.
Because of the structure and purpose of a career and technical school, students are automatically enrolled in a series of courses that count towards their selected program area. These classes are counted as elective courses, which means that students have minimal opportunities in their schedules to take additional electives, such as journalism. For a student to enroll in journalism, this may mean they are completing a foreign language or art course online, in addition to their normal eight classes. Finally, several program classes are only offered once within the A/B block schedule, so they are unable to enroll in journalism if their program area class conflicts with the journalism class period. We do what we do with a small staff and if the circumstances were different, we would have a larger staff, based on student interest and requests.
The Southwest Shadow will continue its convergence partnership with the staff of Rout(e) 131 Video Production staff with the goal of increasing the number of online news packages that incorporate complementary video footage to both news and feature stories. Also, a stronger effort to incorporate The Howl yearbook staff in our work cycle is a main goal for the year.
Please note:SWCTA does not offer NCAA sanctioned sports. We have chosen to allow sports to be covered in-depth by the local city newspapers who have the resources and manpower to visit the outlying comprehensive high schools with those programs.