What is The Stampede?
The Stampede is the official student newspaper of Bishop McNamara High School (Forestville, Maryland). The Stampede’s staff is composed entirely of students, who run every aspect of the newspaper. Students assign and write the stories, produce videos and multimedia projects, design the layout and update the website. We have won some awards.
We believe in our mission
As journalists, our first obligation is to the truth, and our first loyalty is to our readers. Stories are chosen for their relevancy to our community. We strive to balance what is important with what is entertaining. Above all, we seek to keep our readers informed of what they need to know. The Stampede will not publish any material that is determined to be false, libelous, indecent or harmful in any other way.
We publish authentic student voices
Opinion pieces are identified as such and represent only the opinions of their authors, not the opinions of the school or its officials. Staff editorials are authored through a group process. The opinion editors select one or more topics for debate by the staff. After the staff has discussed the issue and approached a consensus on the topic, the opinion editors write on behalf of the entire staff, who then have the opportunity to review the final piece before publication.
We make mistakes
The staff of The Stampede love their school and wish to protect its reputation; any criticism is done in the spirit of improving our programs and helping the school further its mission. The Stampede is also an educational endeavor — its staff is always learning, striving to improve. The faculty adviser teaches the journalism class and instructs the staff in the craft of journalism, including writing, photography, new media, page design and ethical and legal obligations. Corrections will be published in the first print edition after an error is identified.
We work within a private, Catholic, Holy Cross school
This newspaper is subject to prior review by school administration for educational purposes. As the paper is owned and financed by the school, and because we are a private institution, this newspaper is not considered an independent forum and its staff is not granted full First Amendment protections. The staff feels grateful to the administration of Bishop McNamara High School, for their support of our efforts and their repeated affirmation of the benefits that a student press provides to a community such as ours.
We are constantly improving
The staff and adviser of The Stampede have benefited from training and educational opportunities offered by The Maryland/District of Columbia Scholastic Press Association, The American Society of Newspaper Editors, The University of Nevada (Reno), MSNBC.com, Towson University, The University of Maryland College Park, washingtonpost.com, NPR (National Public Radio), WAMU 88.5, WUSA Channel 9 News and The Washington Post’s Young Journalists Development Program.
Please, send us your letters!
The Stampede welcomes letters from our readers, which will be published in a special section on our Editorial Page. We reserve the right to deny publication on the basis of standards of writing or for content deemed offensive or inappropriate for our readers. Letters should be addressed to The Stampede and include the author’s name, year of graduation and contact information. They may be delivered in person or emailed to the staff.
Join the staff
Any student wishing to join the staff of The Stampede may become involved by enrolling in a journalism course (offered by the English department). Special assignments can be handled on an individual basis; please speak to one of the editors or the faculty adviser.