While some high school newspapers disappear, some schools are finding that combining school newspaper and yearbook classes are effective at stimulating student interest and reaching school communities.
Many high schools in the Boulder Valley have closed their student newspapers, due to a lack of interest by students, and an inability to cover costs by selling advertising. Some papers still publish online, and a few are still in print. Some exist as a hybrid of print and online publications.
Student publications in Boulder Valley today are at just half of the comprehensive high schools. The pressure on them is competition from professional publications, and diminished interest in print editions for news. However, the news is not all bad.
At Silver Creek High School, a quarterly magazine called Beak Speak is published. And two St. Vrain Colorado high schools and a middle school are starting student papers this year. Mead High School’s newspaper, The May, is publishing online alread.
Remaining student newspapers in Boulder Valley are progressing strongly, but they have made changes for survival. Some combined yearbook and newspaper classes into a publications class. They also changed from a traditional appearance to a news magazine for print editions. The print editions are published several times a year. The sports stories and ongoing news is published online.
According to Jack Kennedy, executive director of the Colorado Student Media Association, that trend is continuing across the state.
“More publications are trying to do a hybrid of print and online,” he said. “Schools are struggling to figure out how they can be an important source of information despite the fact that they’re not publishing regularly.”