Technology has enabled Englewood High School to change from making morning announcements over the public address system to presenting them as part of a daily television news program produced by and presented by Pirate students.
Englewood’s daily televised newscasts are being done this year for the first time.
“We started the broadcast journalism class last year but did it with basic equipment, so we were only able to produce a program every two weeks,” teacher Sean Duffy said. “The district provided us up-to-date equipment, so we now produce a daily broadcast.”
He said the daily television program is an important step for the school.
“We are seeing journalism move more and more from print to digital media,” Duffy said. “This class introduces the students to digital media in the form of televised programs. This is a journalism class, so we also work with the school newspaper and frequently produce video programs to complement their print stories.”
A classroom has been transformed into the Pirate TV studio. A single, fixed microphone records the audio and a pair of cameras are in place to record the video. All the signals are fed into a state-of-the-art, master-control position that controls audio levels, zooms camera lenses in and out, and edits the program.
The set is minimal, with a table for two student reporters to read the information from a Teleprompter. However, technology is there too. The backdrop behind the students is a “blue screen” so the producer can put in scenery behind the people and add boxes with information, like the temperature and weather forecast.
The daily program is sent to the television sets in each of the classrooms and can be viewed on line at www.pirateer.net.
Josh Ferge is one of the on-air reporters for the telecast.
“I volunteered with the program last semester and signed up for the class this semester,” he said. “I wanted to be part of this program, because it is a great opportunity to work with state-of-the-art technology.”
He said the daily telecast features information about the school, the community and the state. He said there are interviews with students, footage shot at sporting events and off-campus projects, like the recent interview with the state’s lieutenant governor.
“Every day is new and exciting, so this is fun,” Ferge said. “I like being on camera because it challenges me to challenge myself. Besides, I can always go home and tell Mom I am on television.”
Classmate Shay Claycamp chose to be one of the “field reporters” for the telecast.
She said her career goal is to be a nurse, and she wants to be a field reporter who specializes in health-related issues.
“I wanted to be part of this program that shows everyone here at school what is going on here and in the community,” the sophomore said. “Also, I watch the TV news and I can tell that much of it is reported with bias. As a field reporter, I can go out and find out the truth for myself.”