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Stephanie Raper
In the Loop Editor

Development of the Charger Yearbook

Leads, cutlines, images, and the rule of thirds - Grenada High School Annual Staff members learned the meaning of these and other important journalistic terms at a recent yearbook workshop. 

            The Mississippi Scholastic Press Association Fall Regional Workshop, held at the University of Mississippi, drew high school journalism classes from all over the state.  Yearbook, school newspaper, and broadcast students lined up for lectures and hands-on tutorials in many different facets of journalism. 

            Members of the GHS Charger yearbook staff got up early to attend the workshop which began at 8:00a.m.  Students boarded a school bus at 6:45a.m. to reach the Ole Miss campus in time for registration and a breakfast sponsored by the Mississippi Press Association.  After breakfast, the staffers attended the opening session featuring Cindy Todd, an award-winning yearbook advisor from Texas

            Todd focused on the importance of telling the story of each individual school.  She stressed the fact that yearbook, newspaper, and broadcast students are the historians of their schools, and it’s the truth, isn’t it?  Haven’t we all pulled out our yearbooks and old newspapers at class reunions or when we need to remember someone’s name or who did what in high school?  Those yearbooks and newspapers are the bridge to our past, and the importance of the students who design and produce them becomes more evident the older we become. 

            As the yearbook advisor at GHS, I oversee the development of the yearbook.  Every year, we try to improve the book or make changes that will appeal to the students now and in the future.  Themes for the yearbook are heavily debated and tied to important events or elements in the students’ lives.  This is a monumental undertaking as the whole design of the book is based on this theme.  Pictures are planned, categories chosen, and even colors and lettering all revolve around the all-encompassing theme.  Look back at old yearbooks you may have – can you see the theme and how the yearbook carries it throughout the entire book?  I bet you never realized the effort involved or the time it takes to design each page.

            After the theme is finalized and staff members choose the pages and sections they would like to design, it’s time to go out and cover events.  Sporting events, clubs, student life and extra-curricular activities must all be photographed and recorded for posterity.  Hundreds, possibly thousands, of photos are taken each year, but only a few make the cut for the yearbook.  Students choose pictures carefully for their pages, making a concerted effort to use each photo only once.  Staffers also make a great attempt to include as many students as possible in the shots that ultimately grace the pages of the publication.

            GHS yearbook staff members for 2011 – 2012 include Brittany Bess, Rachel Braswell, Dainarria Evans, Sarah Kate Griffin, Tykirah Lee, Katie Little, Beth Moore, Mary Courtney Self, and Taylor Vance.  Etta Jennings, Ashley Martin, and Abby Vance serves as co-editors this year.  

Thanks to these staff members for their hard work and dedication to preserving history for their classmates.  Thanks also to previous members of the GHS Charger yearbook staff for their contribution to our memories.  The yearbooks you produced will be treasured for years to come.