May 19, 2011 / Coverage

There’s more coverage to add with supplements

Written by Elizabeth Braden, CJE

Supplements can be used to add more coverage to a yearbook, but they also can be created as booklets to commemorate school anniversaries and graduation, and for directories and literary magazines.

The most common use for supplements is to add coverage to a yearbook that is delivered in the spring.

“In order to publish the book and release it by the end of the school year, we must stop producing pages for it in the end of March. The spring supplement which is published and released in the fall merely completes the book,” Michael Costello, yearbook adviser at Zeeland West High School in Zeeland, Mich., said.

Costello’s staff will be producing their second supplement this spring, while Trina Derenbecker, adviser at Metairie Park Country Day School in Baton Rouge, La., has done one for three years.

The staffs at both schools finish their yearbooks, then work on the supplement in the spring. The Zeeland West staff works from about April 15 to June 1. The Metairie Park staff works from mid-March to early May. Derenbecker said they also come back a few days after final exams to finish last-minute details and the graduation page.

“Usually I try to have my senior members back off and let the underclassmen gain the experience of being “in charge” of publication. The seniors become consultants,” Derenbecker said.

For both schools, the supplement is included in the price of the yearbook.

“Students who purchased a book are given the supplement in the fall when it comes in,” Costello said.

A supplement for a spring delivery book makes that yearbook more journalistically correct, as it covers the entire school year. Fall delivery books achieve that by putting everything in the yearbook and then distributing it in the late summer or fall.

But a fall yearbook staff can do a spring supplement, too. They can use select spreads in the yearbook and create a four- or eight-page supplement to use as a marketing piece to advertise that yearbooks are on sale. This would let potential buyers see a little of what will be in the yearbook when they get it in the fall. Since the spreads are already created, all that would be needed is a simple cover and back page.

Also, any yearbook staff can consider printing a supplement about graduation and including all of the senior ads. It would be a great fund-raising item, as most senior parents would like to have one. Remember, students will take the yearbook with them when they leave home in a few years. A supplement would enable parents to have a copy of the senior ad that they bought.

To help staffs and other school groups create supplements quickly and affordably, Walsworth now offers Etc., its Extra Topic Coverage supplement program. Etc. can be used for more than yearbook supplements. Administration, faculty and parents can use it for all types of printing needs:
• Literary magazine
• School directory
• PTA newsletter
• School anniversary booklet
• Dedication of a new gym, football stadium or theater program
• Marching band recognition booklet
• Sports teams winning district, regional or state booklet
• Scholar Bowl or robotics teams coverage

Schools can get their supplements back fairly quickly after submission. For example, schools that use Online Design or PDF submission can have their supplements back in as little as two weeks.

The purpose of yearbook is to cover the school year. Now supplements can be used to cover more than the school year.

Learn more and download a free sample with different types of supplements.

Elizabeth Braden, CJE
Elizabeth Braden, CJE

Elizabeth Braden, CJE, is the former editor of Idea File magazine. Before retiring, she was a copywriter for Walsworth Yearbooks for more than 15 years, writing articles for various marketing materials, and proofreading copy for the Yearbook and Commercial divisions. Her career included reporting and editing for United Press International and editing for Knight-Ridder Financial News. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Mass Media News from the University of Tulsa.