WALLINGFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — Some students in Wallingford are getting some early experience in what it takes to put on a broadcast every morning when they go to school.
In this week’s What’s Right With Schools, we’re heading to Dag Hammarskjold Middle School for a behind-the-scenes look at the work that goes into their morning announcements.
It’s like the start of your local newscast, only instead of broadcasting into homes, they’re in the classrooms of the middle school. The morning announcements are no longer over a PA system; this club of about 30 students gets to school early to meet their deadline.
“They get here for 7:35,” advisor for “Panther News Network” George Bikakis said. “Broadcast starts at 7:58 and ends around 8:05 right on time for homeroom.”
Before homeroom, the Panther News Network team has already performed for their peers.
“I do the odd, funny, interesting news,” back desk anchor and sixth grader John Ryan said. “Almost like breaking news.”
Students like Ryan said it’s fun, but not easy.
“It definitely makes me feel less tired, being terrified right off the bat,” Ryan said. “It really helps.”
After their news, the anchors throw it out to reporters positioned live throughout the school to showcase what’s happening that day. This includes writing scripts, running music, changing backgrounds on the green screen.
“I run the encoder,” eighth grade student Taylor Redford said. “It pushes everything live, changes scenes and stuff.”
It’s a busy newsroom, with students challenging themselves and their peers early in the day.
“Challenge of the day,” Redford said, “tell your bestie why they made such a good friend.”