The Central Trend hits a whopping 150,000 views


Last year, The Central Trend staff set a goal of reaching 100,000 views on the site during the school year. Their expectations were completely surpassed as the site accumulated over 130,000 views.

Determined to continue setting challenging goals, the staff this year decided to strive for 150,000 views. With roughly two months of the school year left, the site has reached 150,000 views, and the view goal for The Central Trend has officially been conquered for two consecutive years.

Honors English 10 teacher Kenneth George is the advisor of The Central Trend. Until 2015, The Central Trend was a newspaper that was printed once a month; however, the newspaper incorporated posting stories on a website along with printing newspapers during the 2015-2016 school year. The following school year, the newspaper decided to fully transition to posting stories on the website. Since then, The Central Trend website has contained daily new stories that cover a myriad of recent, informative, and enjoyable topics.

“[Being online] is one hundred percent better in every way,” George said. “All the stories are timely. It’s changeable; if there’s something out there that’s not [suitable], we can quickly jump on it and change it. I just think that it also keeps everybody writing more. And, it allows the community to be much more involved.”

George commenced teaching at FHC in 1994, and preceding his third year, he approached the principal asking why the school did not have a newspaper. The principal responded to George’s question by encouraging him to start a newspaper, and since George participated on the staff of his high school and college newspaper, he did.

George never could have imagined the success the newspaper would end up obtaining. After beating the view goal last year, George’s goal for the staff this year was to not experience any lulls with the quality of their writing throughout the school year.  

“The school year has lulls— we all know,” George said. “I think that TCT has had similar ups and downs sometimes, so I really challenged our editors to [remain consistent], and if one of them has a lull, I have told the other two to [step it up]. I think we have been incredibly consistent this year with our production.”

George credits numerous people and students to the success of The Central Trend. He believes that even the site’s shortest stories, sports profiles and Humans of FHC, attract broad interest from its audience. He also credits the site’s coverage: reviews, editorials, columns, features, and profiles are all posted daily.

“We have the best kids in the school who are really committed and organized; we have the best writers in the school— our writers this year are just so gifted. I think a lot of people come back [to the site] for the writing,” George said. “I think the Sports Report has been a big part of it. All these athletes know the day after their sporting event there’s a story about their game, and I think they go there.”

Senior editors in chief Susannah Bennett, Reena Mathews, and Nisha Rajakrishna are extremely proud of the attention The Central Trend has received throughout the past two school years. Surpassing the view goal for the website for two years in a row has symbolized the obvious importance that the website has within FHC’s atmosphere. 

“It just means that people are reading our stuff, and we’re increasing readership every year, which is just something I am so proud of,” Susannah said. “As the years go on, and as we put ourselves out there more, so many more people come to our site. And I think it’s really cool.”

The three editors credit the talented staff of The Central Trend for the website’s increased popularity this year. They appreciate the constant thought, effort, and talent being poured into each published story, and they are amazed at the progress the website has achieved within one year.

Nisha understands the struggle each writer goes through to establish interviews and compose stories, and she is immensely inspired because of that.  

“Everyone in that room puts so much work into what we do,” Nisha said. “To see our hard work pay off, in front of us and in the form of numbers, is just really, really cool. It makes it all worth it.”

More than ever, the website has been recognized by a significant variety of people this year. Comments from parents, extended family, FHC staff members, and other staff members are all frequently located in the comments sections under articles. Articles from the website have also been featured on the Forest Hills Public Schools Facebook page, and Reena is amazed at the ability that the website has to bring copious people together.

“It’s really nice to know that all of the hard work is being recognized and viewed by so many different people,” Reena said. “It’s really gratifying to know that we have that type of impact on our community. We reach such a wide and diverse audience.”

Throughout the past few years, the staff has strived to increase readership through incorporating into the website different media forms, linking articles on the website on different social media platforms, constructing signs to advertise the website, and holding various contests. The staff truly has made a remarkable push to make The Central Trend a well-known name.

The three editors agree with George regarding the impressive coverage the staff consistently achieves. The number of options TCT provides can easily be overwhelming, but the quality of the writing is consistently outstanding. The information involving sports, movies, news within the school, and other relevant topics that the website contains is extremely impressive.

“A big focus for us as a staff is making sure that we cover a wide variety of students and people within the community and school,” Reena said. “We stay on top of different events, photos for sports, musicals, and Q&As for events throughout the school. We really try to keep up with the happenings of the school. We are even consistent with the more technical things like posting consistency or advertising, and that’s something that reaches people.”

The editors also acknowledge the effect that the admirable coverage the Sports Report maintains for each sport at every level has made on the website. Under the organized leadership of senior Sports Editor in Chief Molly Donovan, the Sports Report has been able to attract insane readership through seasonal voting polls, frequent player profiles, and game previews and summaries.

Overall, each editor is impressed with the determination of each writer to consistently place their absolute best work onto the website, and they believe that the strenuous work provided by the staff has contributed to the website’s gargantuan readership. When a staff is composed of talent and unarguable passion for writing, it is no surprise that a vast audience is undeniably attracted to the work of that staff.

“There are people who want to be there who love writing and are excited to do their job and be on staff,” Susannah said. “I think that factors into how well the writing plays out. It’s like people want to write that story, they want to make it good. I think that drive has boosted our numbers too.”

“I think everyone on staff is happy to be on staff and enjoys doing it and being a part of the community we formed,” Nisha said. “I think that when you have people that enjoy what they do, and it’s not a big task for them, their passion translates into the quality of writing in what they put out— which is also why readers like reading what we write.”