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The California Report Magazine Taken Over by High Schoolers ... For a Week

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High school senior (and this week's co-host) Tyrius Ammons, with The California Report Magazine host Sasha Khokha at Richmond High School.  (Chanelle Ignant/KQED)

Tyrius Ammons is a high school senior, artist and video-gamer. And this week, he's the co-host of The California Report Magazine.

All week long, students from 10 Bay Area high schools have filled the KQED airwaves as part of a Youth Takeover, contributing stories and commentaries on several programs.

Meet The California Report Magazine's (Teenage) Co-Host

While Ammons takes us around Richmond High School and introduces his peers' stories, he also shares his story of what it was like growing up with a single mom.

"I think this is new. You get young people on a show that's been around for a long time. Gives it a new spice and people get to get a little exposure to students and their lives, especially in the Bay Area."

Music Is the Spirit That Moves These Teens From Tonga

Joe Fifita (L) and Moala Tautuaa (R) are cousins who grew up singing in Tonga. They now live in East Palo Alto and are seniors at Menlo-Atherton High School. (Bianca Taylor/KQED)

High school seniors and cousins, Joe Fifita and Moala Tautuaa, both 18, have been singing and playing music for as long as they can remember. They say it connects them to their Tongan roots, and makes them better students, better athletes, better friends and better people.


"It’s like we define every single note when we’re young, and just build on it as we get older."

Redefining Manhood in Richmond

Frank Mendieta (L) and Brian Higareda (R) examine how expectations and stereotypes of manliness negatively affect young men growing up in Richmond. (Chanelle Ignant/KQED)

Young men growing up in Richmond face pressure to suppress their emotions, be violent and hide who they really are. Richmond High School students Frank Mendieta and Brian Higareda interviewed their friends and mentors to explore this "mask" of manhood.

"We have to put an end to gender norms where the the man is a tough heartless person, and the woman is a sensitive caring person."

High School Student Goes From Homeless to Hopeful

Jennifer is a senior at Richmond High School. She spent two years living in a garage with her family. (Laura Klivans/KQED)

Jennifer may look like your average high school senior, but for two years, she was homeless. She lived in a garage with her undocumented parents for two years while they searched for a new home.

"I’m grateful for the family I have. Because no matter the situation that happened or the things that we went through, we stayed together in a way."

Cancer Cuts a Childhood Friendship Short, but Lessons Last

Lucas Tran is a senior at Lincoln High School in San Francisco. He poses in his scouting uniform. He's working towards an Eagle Scout rank.
Lucas Tran is a senior at Lincoln High School in San Francisco. He poses in his scouting uniform. He's working toward an Eagle Scout rank. (Courtesy Lucas Tran)

When Lucas Tran, 17, first joined the Cub Scouts, he wasn't too excited about the program. But one day a fellow Scout asked him to join in a dodgeball game, and Tran's life would change forever.

"He taught me to enjoy life and to stay positive. But most importantly, Andy taught me to never take things for granted. Enjoy what you have right now because you never truly appreciate it until it's gone."

For This Teen, Dance Teaches the Value of Vulnerability

Daisy Kwok freestyles hip-hop at Lincoln High School's talent show in February. (Courtesy Daisy Kwok)

Daisy Kwok, 18, joined her school’s Hip-Hop Club and discovered a passion for dance. Over the years, her initial shyness transformed into self-assurance. She now leads a hip-hop dance team at Abraham Lincoln High School in San Francisco.

"If a choreography is a controlled showcase of self, then a freestyle is putting all your emotions and anxieties on the line, on the spot. Dance makes me feel like I can fly, but it also translates into my biggest fear: vulnerability."

Listen to this and more in-depth storytelling by subscribing to The California Report Magazine podcast.

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