August 9, 2018 / Coverage Spotlight

Coverage Spotlight shows back-to-school coverage can have unique spin for your school

Written by Evan Blackwell, CJE

As schools start back in session in many parts of the country this month, that means yearbook staffs are heading back to work on 2019 yearbooks. In our newest Coverage Spotlight, we’re going to take a look at a traditional staple in the student life section of many books – back-to-school coverage.

Lots of staffs devote some of the first spreads in their yearbook to catching up to what students were up to over the summer. After that, the first day of school arrives as one of the signature events of the year.

But the first day is also one of those events that happens every year. So the coverage of it might get a little stale or repetitive. But it doesn’t have to. Let’s take a look at how some staffs kept it fresh and unique to their school and year in their 2018 yearbooks.

What’s new?

The 2018 staff from Lugoff-Elgin High School in Lugoff, South Carolina, highlighted the fact that there was a lot of newness around their school going into the 2017-18 school year. So they created a back-to-school spread that asked a variety of students for their opinions on what was new at Lugoff-Elgin.

A new school sign, new parking passes, a new spirit rock, a new Creative Writing Club – students got to sound off on all of it in a series of quotes. It was a great way to historically document the year for future readers.

Back-to-school shopping

Spread from the 2018 Lair on the first day of school for freshmen.

The 2018 staff from Seminole High School in Sanford, Florida, created a back-to-school spread and the lead story was on shopping, as in the most popular places students went to shop for back-to-school clothes and school supplies – a fun, clever way to slip in some trendiness in to the coverage.

Focus on freshmen

At Shawnee Mission Northwest High School in Shawnee, Kansas, the first day of school for freshmen is pretty similar to most high schools – a nerve-wracking experience.

The 2018 Lair staff decided to zero in on that, creating a spread that told the first day story through the eyes of the newbies.

In pictures and words, the spread followed the freshmen through their orientation day, offering the viewpoints of the new kids and the seniors helping them.

What angles will your staff be taking with your back-to-school/first day coverage?

Evan Blackwell, CJE
Evan Blackwell, CJE

Evan Blackwell, CJE, is a Web Content Specialist for walsworthyearbooks.com and yearbookhelp.com, as well as a regular contributor to Idea File magazine. He's been a writer and editor for Walsworth Yearbooks for the past 13 years, and is the author of the Yearbook Suite's "The Art of the Interview" unit. Prior to joining Walsworth, Blackwell spent five years as an award-winning newspaper and magazine journalist. He holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Kansas.