Happening Now
  • May 29The Link Crew Meeting Will Be This Thursday At Lunch Under The Band Shelter
  • May 13Congratulations to Maria Navarro who placed 2nd and 3rd in the 300 and 100 hurdles at Friday’s CIF Division 2 Championships!
  • May 13Interested in conditioning for girl's wrestling? Join us in the weight room Monday-Thursday afterschool or contact Coach Torres
  • May 6Seniors, Please Check Your School Email; You Have Been Sent Information Regarding The Money You Owe For Books, School Equipment, Etc
  • May 1Graduation Practice: 6/5 Seniors are to be in Wilson gym by 8:30 a.m. and practice @ 9 a.m
The Student News Site of Santa Maria High School

The Breeze

The Student News Site of Santa Maria High School

The Breeze

The Student News Site of Santa Maria High School

The Breeze


SMHS’s Journalism program and policies

Santa Maria High School’s The Breeze publication has been in operation for more than a century. Originally created by faculty member and Dean of Girls, Ethel Pope, our school newspaper is one of the longest running student newspapers in California, having first been published in 1920.

Mrs. van den Heever has been the adviser for The Breeze since 2016. This online webpage was started in 2021.


Our Mission

The mission of The Breeze journalism staff is to create a journalism program our student body can access and appreciate.  Along those lines, we have expanded the program to include: The Halo Magazine, Shootin’ the Breeze podcast, and Video Productions

Questions? Contact Mrs. van D at [email protected]

The history of The Breeze is a fascinating one! Learn more here: How the Breeze got its name.


The First Amendment states:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

California student free expression law (1977)

In addition to the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, states can also provide free speech protection to their own citizens by enacting state laws or regulations. The California Student Free Expression Law is such a provision and provides student journalists attending California public high schools, including charter schools, with added protection against administrative censorship. The law also protect teachers and other school personnel against retaliation for students’ lawful exercise of their free-speech rights. California’s law, passed in 1977 and amended over the years to include protection for charter schools and advisers , was the first state law in the country specifically protecting student media. It is the only such law to pre-date the U.S. Supreme Court’s 1988 Hazelwood decision and was the model for the anti-Hazelwood and New Voices laws that have followed.

Cal. Educ. Code Section 48907 – Student exercise of free expression:

Ed Code 48907 affirms the right of high school newspapers to publish whatever they choose, so long as the content isn’t explicitly obscene, libelous, or slanderous, and doesn’t incite students to violate any laws or school regulations.  The law protects the press freedom of California’s public school student journalists. The law says that student media cannot be censored by school officials, except in certain very narrow circumstances, and that advisers cannot be penalized for refusing to infringe on their students’ press rights.

(a) Pupils of the public schools, including charter schools, shall have the right to exercise freedom of speech and of the press including, but not limited to, the use of bulletin boards, the distribution of printed materials or petitions, the wearing of buttons, badges, and other insignia, and the right of expression in official publications, whether or not the publications or other means of expression are supported financially by the school or by use of school facilities, except that expression shall be prohibited which is obscene, libelous, or slanderous. Also prohibited shall be material that so incites pupils as to create a clear and present danger of the commission of unlawful acts on school premises or the violation of lawful school regulations, or the substantial disruption of the orderly operation of the school.

(b) The governing board or body of each school district or charter school and each county board of education shall adopt rules and regulations in the form of a written publications code, which shall include reasonable provisions for the time, place, and manner of conducting such activities within its respective jurisdiction.

(c) Pupil editors of official school publications shall be responsible for assigning and editing the news, editorial, and feature content of their publications subject to the limitations of this section. However, it shall be the responsibility of a journalism adviser or advisers of pupil publications within each school to supervise the production of the pupil staff, to maintain professional standards of English and journalism, and to maintain the provisions of this section.

(d) There shall be no prior restraint of material prepared for official school publications except insofar as it violates this section. School officials shall have the burden of showing justification without undue delay prior to a limitation of pupil expression under this section.

(e) “Official school publications” refers to material produced by pupils in the journalism, newspaper, yearbook, or writing classes and distributed to the student body either free or for a fee.

(f) This section does not prohibit or prevent the governing board or body of a school district or charter school from adopting otherwise valid rules and regulations relating to oral communication by pupils upon the premises of each school.

(g) An employee shall not be dismissed, suspended, disciplined, reassigned, transferred, or otherwise retaliated against solely for acting to protect a pupil engaged in the conduct authorized under this section, or refusing to infringe upon conduct that is protected by this section, the First Amendment to the United States Constitution, or Section 2 of Article I of the California Constitution.

Comments Policy

Comments are welcomed and appreciated on our articles. Comments are expected to adhere to a tone of a respectful and constructive nature.  To that end, comments will need to be approved before they are posted.  Threats and intimidation are not tolerated and will be reported. Discriminatory comments directed at a person or groups of persons because of national origin, race, religion, or gender will likewise not be tolerated.  When visitors leave comments on the site we collect the data shown in the comments form, and also the visitor’s IP address and browser user agent string to help spam detection.


Content on The Breeze is determined, created, and edited by the student staff. Therefore, content reflects the views and opinions of the student staff and not school officials, the adviser, or the school or district itself.

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The Student News Site of Santa Maria High School