By Ken George, Journalism Teacher, Forest Hills Central High School
When fhcrangers.com was born, we set a goal as a newspaper class to cover every home varsity event. Initially, we thought it might be an overwhelming task, but with 18 staff members, we were able to cover them quite easily. In fact, each staff member was only required to cover one contest per season (two contests in the Fall), with a second one offered for extra credit. My first task was to teach the class how to write game reports that would be instantly available to our public. We were used to writing sports articles, but it was much less timely and we always took a feature angle. Now, for the first time in the history of our paper, people would immediately read the articles we wrote.
Now, it really runs like clockwork. I have been able to experience the situation first-hand, as I am interviewed by a staff member after every home game. Thus far, the response has been very positive. All of the players’ parents read the articles religiously, and most of the students who are sports fans are linked to the site through their Facebook accounts. I would say that is has become an integral part of Forest Hills Central’s school culture.
In the future, we are toying with covering more away events. I continue to believe that it is best to have students do the writing rather than parents of players. Part of my students’ grades is based on their coverage of the games and the quality of the writing, so the students are very motivated to do a good job.
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