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Texas Association of Journalism Educators

TAJE P.O. Box 5554 Austin, TX 78763-5554 Sheryl Floyd President 512-594-0500 Susan Duncan President-Elect 903-295-5031, ext. 265 Cindy Berry Secretary 940-393-7231 cindy.berry@ Mikyela Tedder Treasurer 903-881-4075 Lisa Van Etta State Director 281-856-1071 Pat Gathright Convention Director 210-325-7793 Brenda Slatton Assistant Convention Director 210-442-0300, ext. 350 Sue Jett Assistant Convention Director 210-442-0800, ext. 262 Lori Herbst Past President 940-369-3021 Dianne Smith-Harper Webmaster Rhonda Moore Executive Director 512-414-7539

Poynter Institute’s Tompkins to keynote Fall Fiesta convention Al Tompkins, The Poynter planned for 2009. He co-authored four editions Institute's Group Leader for Broadcasting and Online, will of the Radio and Television be the keynote speaker at the News Directors Foundation's 2009 Fall Fiesta convention in "Newsroom Ethics" workbook. Tompkins has San Antonio. trained thousands Tompkins writes an of television news online journalism story producers, reportidea column called "Al's ers, photojournalists Morning Meeting" on and managers in his One-Day Storytelling “He knows so much Workshops. He has about multi media and taught and coached how to use technology print newsrooms in in a variety of ways,” Al Tompkins the U.S. and abroad said TAJE president Sheryl Floyd. “He will captivate how to build interactive news the audience with his presenta- Web sites, how to use video tions and show them how to more effectively online and tell stories that intrigue viewers how to manage ethical issues that arise online. and readers.” Tompkins was inducted Tompkins joined Poynter’s faculty from his job as news into the Kentucky Journaldirector at WSMV-TV in Nash- ism Hall of Fame and in 2008 ville, Tenn. For 24 years, he was awarded The Governor's worked as a photojournalist, Award, the highest honor givreporter, producer, anchor, as- en by the National Academy of sistant news director, special Television Arts and Sciences. projects/investigations direc- His other awards include The tor, documentary producer and National Emmy, The Peabody Award (group award) and the news director. Tompkins is the author of Robert F. Kennedy Award for the book "Aim For The Heart: international reporting. “He uses dynamic examples A Guide for TV Producers and Reporters," which was adopted and is a terrific story teller,” by more than 75 universities Floyd said. “He does all of this as their main broadcast writ- while teaching students jouring textbook. A new edition is nalistic integrity and style.”


Check the newsletter and contest rules for changes to contests Clip contest deadline is Dec. 12

August 2009


• All registration can now be done online, including contest entries. Please check the Web site. • A new team scavenger hunt photo contest has been added. • A Best of Show contest has been added for online newspapers. • The price for Breakfast with a Pro has increased to $15 per person. • Carry-in photo contests will be handed in on CDs, one disk per school per category. Reminders: • Registration will end at 2 p.m. on Saturday. Best of Show entries and carry-in contest entries must be turned in by 2 p.m. • Students may use computers in the on-site contests. Students who choose to use computers will need to bring a printer. Students from the same school can all use the same printer, but all contest entries must be printed and turned in by the end of the contest. No one will be given extra time. • Bring a power strip if students will be using computers. • Advisers, please remember to let students in the on-site photo contests select the photos they turn in to be judged. Part of the contest is judgment, being able to select the highest quality photos.


In Brief

Members to elect regional reps Regional representative elections will be held in February. Anyone interested in running for regional representative should contact TAJE president-elect Susan Duncan at

Students must be registered for contests by deadline Students must be pre-registered to compete in convention contests. Advisers will receive a confirmation e-mail when entries arrive. Many times advisers will mark that their students will enter contests then send the names later. This is fine as long as the names arrive by the deadline. If student names are not turned in on time, students will not be allowed to compete. Name changes for contests can be made at registration, but if a name has not been entered before the convention, students will not be allowed to compete.

UIL to host student activity conferences UIL will host four Student Activities Conferences to introduce students and advisers to UIL contests. The dates and locations are as follows: Sept. 19: University of North Texas Denton Oct. 3: Texas Tech University Lubbock Oct. 17: University of Texas at Austin Oct. 31: Sam Houston State University Huntsville

Texas Association of Journalism Educators

August 2009

Students trump stress when deciding to stay with journalism teaching Teachers, board can support each other I don’t know about you, but I had year the most is knowing I will have a terribly stressful year last year. So some help. I finally unloaded one of bad that I was looking for a different my publications (yearbook) to a new, vocation. Law school? Public affairs? incoming teacher. I am looking forward Anything that didn’t involve dealing to working with her and sharing in her with teenagers and administrative enthusiasm. politics. I also know I have support from all But as I finally looked over the of you. And you should know that the final exam comments I had given TAJE board is there to support you my publications too. TAJE has a students in July few ways to help (yes, I know I you get the year should have read off to a great start. Sheryl Floyd them before I gave First, take a look at Pflugerville HS the students a final the new, revised TAJE President exam grade), I was curriculum that has truly shocked and reassured that I been put online for all of the contents was in the right place. areas we teach: Photojournalism, The fact that my students thought Journalism I, Newspaper, Yearbook, my class was the “coolest and most Broadcasting and Desktop Publishing. chill class” and that they “loved me” Thanks to the teachers who put those and that “this class enhanced the together for all of us to use. They high school experience” reinforced are free for anyone and are a great my will to survive (and thrive) and resource. that I am doing what I was meant to In addition, watch the Web site and do. your e-mail for upcoming Regional I am sure that many of us who have Workshops. The workshops are hosted been doing this for awhile had no by your TAJE Regional Representative. idea that teaching journalism would With so much technology in our lives involve what we are now doing. As right now, the reps and the board we face a new era of technology- are looking for ways to help you get fed information, we must continue comfortable with these changes in our to evolve to meet the needs of our new information age. students and learn along with them And finally, get ready for one of what our journalism frontiers will our best TAJE conventions yet. We look like on the horizon. have a wonderful keynote speaker, Al Speaking of horizons, those of Tompkins from the Poynter Institute, you who know me know that I pretty who will not only focus on these new much “do it all” at my school. I teach technologies but how to use them in Journalism I, newspaper, yearbook, other sessions at the convention. Also, video technology, began an online look out for a new photo contest that paper and do a daily announcement will be fun for your staffs. show. So I am there with all of you. So as we face the horizon of the new I want you to know that I feel your year, I want you to know how excited stress, confusion as well as those I and the rest of the board are to serve small triumphs (like when you you. We truly want to know how we fix that computer without calling can best meet your needs. Contact any for tech support.) Maybe what of us via e-mail. Have a great year and has helped me face the upcoming see you in October at the convention!

From the President

August 2009

Texas Association of Journalism Educators


Teachers urged to share experiences with convergent media at convention As I sat down to write my first column as state director several ideas for topics fleetingly went through my mind. However, the one which kept coming back front and center was the term being echoed throughout the journalism world, convergent media. Technology has changed the way the world perceives journalism and how journalists perform their jobs. The days of departmentalized jobs and titles for journalists are morphing into one. The 21st century journalist is no longer just a writer, but must also be a photographer, videographer and at ease in front of the camera too. As journalism teachers we must change our perception about how we prepare the young journalists sitting in our publication classes to continue their journalism education and careers after high school. The State of Texas has always been a leader in the world of scholastic journalism. Texas can currently boast it has more public school journalism programs than any other state. As of April, its members total 225, the highest en-

rollment for JEA. If we want to contin- who has experience in web based jourue to dominate in scholastic journalism nalism to share their knowledge at at the national level, we must begin to TAJE’s Fall Fiesta by volunteering to converge today’s technology into high conduct a session. So, if you are not currently advisschool publications. ing an online paper While attending the or considering the national convention idea of some form this spring in PhoeLisa Van Etta of web base journalnix, I noticed almost Cypress Falls HS ism I encourage you 85 percent of the sesTAJE State Director to. Believe you me, I sions concentrated on know for some of us some form of media technology. Very few sessions for print veteran teachers it means a whole new newspapers appeared on the schedule, learning curve. But I am a true believer most focused upon online newspapers, in the saying, “you are never too old to podcasting and the latest form of tech- learn.” For the next generation of young nology communication, Twitter. Texas high school journalism stu- journalism teachers, I challenge you to dents possess the ability and talent to pick up the gantlet and reestablish Texcompete with schools such as Califor- as scholastic journalism as the predomnia’s The Paley,Palto Alto inant leader of today’s new convergent High School, El, Monta scholastic publications. Vista High School, Cupertino or The To present a session at the Carmel High School, Carmel Indiana. We as journalism teachers convention, go to the TAJE need to begin to offer them the opporWeb site,, and fill out tunity to do so. a form under Fall Fiesta 2009. I am asking any adviser in the state

The TAJE executive board and the regional representatives met July 2-3 in Salado. Officers voted to post information on the Web site about how to get certified in journalism after receiving an e-mail from a future teacher who had questions about the process. Officers voted to give Marynell Bryant a lifetime membership. After discussion, officers voted to discontinue college scholarship categories. The $1500 Bill Taylor Memorial Scholarship will continue to be awarded to the Journalist of the Year, but the four $1,000 college scholarships will no longer be be designated to certain types of high school journalists. The TAJE business meeting will be

held one hour earlier at the Fall Fiesta convention to allow committee members time to meet. ILPC director Jeanne Acton reported the ILPC convention dates will move to April 10-11. In the UIL headline writing contest, headlines shorter than the minimum count will be disqualified. ATPI executive director Mark Murray said the ATPI winter conference will move to the first weekend of February, Feb. 5-7. ATPI will continue to accept contest entries at TAJE. The organization is considering adding newcomer categories to contests. Officers voted to raise the price of Breakfast with a Pro to $15 per person because of the high cost of the hotel meals.

State Director’s Report

Executive Board, regional reps meet in July

The overflow hotel will be the St. Anthony Hotel. Convention registration fees will increase next year to $25, $30 and $35. TAJE will not host a convention in 2012 because the national convention will be in San Antonio that year, and the organization needs to remain financially stable. Officers voted to add an online newspaper Best of Show category and a team scavenger hunt on-site photography contest. Officers discussed the 2012 national convention to be held in San Antonio. A local committee will be organized soon. Any member interested in joining the local committee should contact an officer.


Texas Association of Journalism Educators

August 2009

Regional representatives plan adviser workshops Regional representatives met with the executive board at its annual retreat in July. Anyone who wants a mentor or wishes to be a mentor should contact his/ her representative. Regional reps host adviser workshops in the fall. The representatives and their e-mail addresses are as follows:

I Amarillo

Lubbock El Paso

Region I Laura Smith Canyon HS, 1701 23rd St. Canyon 79015 806.677.2740 More than 100 students and advisers from 16 schools in Region I attended the three-day Panhandle Publications Workshop in Amarillo July 1-3. The workshop was held in the summer rather than the fall at the request of teachers. Region I teachers are encouraged to attend Fall Fiesta in San Antonio in October. Anyone with any questions or concerns can contact Laura Smith at Region II Mary Beth Lee SH Rider HS, 4611 Cypress Wichita Falls 76310 940.235-1077 ext. 31061 (S) 940-232-1589 (C) Oct. 3, Advisers Workshop •Motivation •Building your program from scratch •Convergent Media More information to be announced soon. Contact Mary Beth Lee at Region III Annette Johnson Carthage HS #1 Bulldog Dr. Carthage 75633



Wichita Falls


Ft Worth Dallas


Waco Odessa/Midland





Advisers: Save this date (Sept. 26) and put your bus requisition in now! A prize will be awarded to the Region V school with the most students in attendance. See you there! Contact: Christine Keyser-Fanick, Region V Representative, at

Region VI Laura Negri Alief Kerr HS 8150 Howell Corpus Christi Sugarland Rd. Houston 77083 281.983.8484, Brownsville ext. 267- School 832.379.9924 - Home laura.k.negri 903.693.2552, ext. 267 (S) 903.694.9918 (H) Region VI Workshop 21st Century Journalism Region IV Oct. 3, 8 a.m.-2 p.m. Pat Monroe Alief Kerr High School Burges HS 8150 Howell Sugar Land Rd. 7800 Edgemere Houston 77083 El Paso 79925 Topics: what your students need to 915.780.1100, ext. 6203 - School know now; using social networking 915.822.2513 - Home sites; online newspapers; yearbook sales online; podcasting; and software tips and tricks. Region V Contact: Laura Negri, lauraekn@ Christine Keyser-Fanick, 832-465-9150 John Paul Stevens HS 600 N. Ellison Dr. Region VII San Antonio 78251 Janet Simpson 210.397.6450 (S) 210.681.6819 (H) Calallen HS 4001 Wildcat Dr. SAVE THIS DATE! Region V advisers Corpus Christi 78410 and students are invited to San Anto361.242.5649 (S) 361.877.7387 (H) nio College on Saturday, Sept. 26, for a fabulous day of writing, advertising, photography, design and multi-media A fall workshop for advisers only, workshops. Region V advisers will sponsored by Walsworth and Calalalso have a separate session for a round len High School, will be held at Calaltable discussion of current issues in len High School and will cover Dejournalism education. Cost will be $10 sign Trends, Photoshop and InDesign per student. Advisers attend free. More with hands-on computer experience. information, including starting and Contact Janet Simpson at jsimpson@ ending times, will be published as the for more information. information becomes available. San Antonio



August 2009

Texas Association of Journalism Educators


2012 will be here before we know it

TAJE officers begin to look for committee volunteers for JEA/NSPA national convention in San Antonio The Fall 2012 JEA/NSPA national convention will be Deep in the Heart of Texas. San Antonio, to be exact. TAJE is already starting to plan. One of the first things we’ve done is organized a student design contest for the convention logo. Members were sent postcards with information about the contest. Information is also on the Web site, Please encourage your students to enter. In addition, we are looking for members to include in the local committee. Advisers do not have to be from San Antonio to be on the committee. Anyone interested in being a member should contact any of the TAJE officers. Below is a list of the items the local committee will handle. If you want to be help with something specific or if you have any suggestions, please let us know. • Opening Ceremony/Welcome — We need to plan something fun to get the convention started. There will be a keynote speaker Thursday night and Friday afternoon. JEA/NSPA usually contacts the keynote speakers but suggestions from the local committee are welcome. • Break with a Pro — We need to get local professionals for this event that is scheduled for 9-11 a.m. Friday. • Swap Shops — Historically, these have been 9-11 a.m. Saturday, but we tried 8-10 p.m. Friday in Phoenix with pretty good response. We can decide what you would prefer. • Write-offs — We need to secure judges for contests, arrange for speakers for categories that require a speaker(s) (News, Feature, Sports, Commentary, Review), help national co-chairs. There should be a couple of local people to help national Write-off chairs at the Write-off desk near registration on Thursday and Friday. • On-site Critiques — We need to secure people to do critiques, collect the money, mail publications to critics before the convention as well as set up a critique schedule and have some backup critics in case someone doesn’t show. • Exhibits — The locals can earn extra money by getting local advertisers/exhibitors for the trade show. • Adviser Bags — We need to secure freebies for the adviser bags and help with stuffing the items in the bags (this could be done by local students). • Friday Night Auction — If we decide to do an auction for SPLC and/or another organization, we’ll need to gather the auction items, make the forms, set up the tables, etc. (JEA staff can help collect the money — including credit card payments — and then distribute the funds to the appropriate groups).

Items related to journalism, sports memorabilia, baskets, do well. • Issue Seminars — Organize and get speakers for four, two-hour issue seminars covering topics that students could localize. The JEA board requests that one is on a topic about diversity (could be other than race/ethnicity) and one on media law/ethics. • Friday Luncheon — We can have a special speaker for the Friday adviser luncheon. • Featured Speakers — We need to secure break-out session professional speakers from the convention area who would be well-received by students and advisers. They should be comfortable speaking to 200-400 people although if it’s a narrow topic, we can schedule them in a smaller room. We need a diverse mix of folks in various media — advertising, newspaper, online, broadcasting, magazine, editorial cartoon, photography, etc. It might be interesting to get people who cover the same area on a regular basis — government, arts/leisure/travel, education, religion, business, science/health/ environment, sports, columns/editorials, cartoons/infographics, photography, etc., and show how these areas can give depth to a high school publication. Do you have former students who are now professional journalists? They might be good speakers. Remember, JEA/NSPA do not pay speaker transportation, lodging, speaking fees or meals. • Welcoming committee/student helpers — Committee members and about 25 students help with various parts of the convention, stuffing bags, handing out speaker gifts (if we choose to do them), helping people find meeting rooms, help in the Write-off room, etc. NSPA may need help at registration. • Curriculum CD — This is optional. One person collects curriculum ideas, lesson plans, etc. and burns disks for those who contributed. Have these stuffed in school packets before registration opens. • T-shirts — If we want to design and sell a convention T-shirt, we’ll need to have the art ready in time for the registration booklet (July 1). • Convention scholarships — Someone on the local committee collects these applications and sends them to NSPA. We may also try to get local businesses to contribute money for more scholarships. • Outreach Academy — A local person will help collect See ‘Board members’ on page 6

Consider being a part of the committee. We want to show the rest of the country all Texas has to offer.


Texas Association of Journalism Educators

August 2009

Out-of-state speakers to present sessions at convention David Knight, Scott Winter, JEA president Jack Kennedy and JEA executive director Linda Puntney are among the presenters at the Fall Fiesta convention Oct. 17-19 in San Antonio. Knight is Public Information Director for Lancaster County School District in South Carolina, and he teaches broadcasting there. He is the former adviser of the student newspaper at Spring Valley High School in Columbia, SC, which won Best in State for three years, the Sweepstakes Award for most individual contest winners six of seven years, and numerous awards for regional and national associations. In 1993, he received the Gold Key Award from the Columbia Scholastic Press Association and has been recognized with the Edith Fox King Award. Winter is a lecturer at the University of Nebraska’s College of Journalism and Mass Communications. He’s advised publications, on-and-off, for 10 years in three states.

He teaches national workshops during the summer. His students have won several awards, including Best of Show rankings and Pacemakers. They’ve won Hemingway Awards from the Kansas City Star and even a Robert F. Kennedy Foundation Journalism Award. He’s also been a professional journalist for five years, working in sports writing, feature writing, graphic design and feature editing. In addition to presenting sessions, Puntney and Kennedy will be on hand to administer the Certified Journalism Educator or Master Journalism Educator test to any adviser who wishes to take one. On the registration form on page eight of the convention booklet, there is a place to check for anyone who wishes to take one of the tests. In addition, advisers who want to take the test must contact JEA at least a month before the convention.

Members urged to volunteer

It takes a village...or at least a committee TAJE has several committees, and members can volunteer to be a part of any committee. Anyone interested in joining a committee should contact a board member. Below is a list of committees. Nominating — Currently looking for members to run for regional representative in February. Anyone interested in running or nominating someone should contact Susan Duncan at Scholarships — TAJE presents college scholarships and workshop scholarships. Information can be found on the Web site, Education — Members have discussed using committee to keep members in-

formed about changes with TEA. Another suggestion was to find two lessons that work well and post them to the Web site. Membership — Members are encouraged to promote TAJE whenever possible. New teachers receive the first year of membership for free. Awards — Members are encouraged to nominate others for Trailblazer Award and Friend of Journalism Award. First Amendment — Anyone interested in this committee should contact Dianne Smith at TAJE will hold business meetings an hour earlier at conventions so that committee members will have time to meet afterwards.

Upcoming conventions JEA/NSPA Nov. 12-15 Washington, DC ATPI Feb. 13-15 UT Arlington

CSPA March 17-19 Columbia University ILPC April 10-11 UT Austin JEA/NSPA April 15-18 Portland, Oregon

Board members begin plans for 2012 convention Continued from page 5 the application forms and help with this on Thursday. • Media Tours — We are in charge of arranging media tours. NSPA is in charge of the citywide tours. • Student entertainment for Friday and Saturday nights — There are usually dances, but we might want to come up with something else for one night. Occasionally there are movie showings. We need chaperones for this. • Promotion — We need to come up with a logo and theme for the convention. Check the TAJE Web site for information about the logo design contest. • City guide — An adviser’s staff could design a student’s guide to the city — nearby restaurants, shopping, attractions, public transportation tips, etc. Coupons to nearby restaurants or stores may be something to include. Please consider being a part of the committee. We want to show the rest of the country all Texas has to offer.

Upfront Aug. 2009  

TAJE newsletter

Upfront Aug. 2009  

TAJE newsletter