Channel 060, pronounced oh-six-oh, is in its initial year at Campus High School in Haysville, KS.
We completely re-branded our school news channel to get more kids interested in watching and participating in it. Channel 060 has been a tremendous experience and challenge for me since this is my first year teaching broadcasting. The “Channel 060” name is play on our Zip Code, 67060.
Channel 060 is quickly becoming the most rewarding class I teach. I love seeing students come in to class excited to complete their news story segments and improve our channel. I love working with my leadership team daily to search for continuous improvement. It is neat to see their drive for perfection. We hope to make Channel 060 a part of our school culture. We are well on our way.
Tell us about your background and how you decided to start teaching TV/Video production?
- I had no experience teaching broadcasting before this year. I was asked to take over our school broadcast and we decided to re-brand it from Colt News to Channel 060. As a business teacher at Campus High School, I teach; Accounting, Banking & Finance, Investing, Bank Internship, Web Design & Development, and Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID).
- This is my fourth year in education. I served on active duty in the Air National Guard for about 8 years before deciding to become a teacher. The transition from military to education has been a big change, but an amazing one.
How did you obtain initial funding for your program? How do you fund the class now?
- Funding for our program is initially coming from our business department/school budget. Next year we will set aside more funds from our Carl Perkins Grant money to purchase new equipment we need.
Did you have equipment available?
- We had the main equipment we needed to get our show up and running since the class already existed prior to this year. Most of the equipment was outdated and we need more variety, so we are in the process of purchasing more.
How many kids are in the TV/Video Production classes? How is it broken down? Is it a multi-year program?
- Currently our program consists of a Broadcast I and Broadcast II classes stacked together in a 120-minute block every other day. The combined class has 32 students. Additionally, I will teach an Intro to Video Production/Marketing class in the Spring semester. This will be a required class to take Broadcasting in the future.
- The Audio/Video Communications pathway at our school features classes in Journalism, Graphic Design, Intro to Video Production/Marketing, and Broadcasting I/II. Each class being a semester course with Broadcasting II being repeatable.
- The hope is to improve and grow the program after this year. As the program improves Broadcasting I/II will become their own classes and will not be stacked.
Can you tell us a little more about the sessions: How long are the classes? How many students? What types of projects?
- Each class is 120-minutes long and meets every other school day. I decided the Broadcast I/II class would instantly begin producing Channel 060.
- I did not have a lot of time at the beginning of the semester to train the students on the details. I did a couple weeks of introductory training to get them familiar with the equipment, roles, and the production schedule. The students ingested a lot of information those first few weeks.
- We also met for one entire class period the first week and discussed who and what we wanted to be. The class came up with our slogan, “News From People You Know.” We also discussed pillars of our success; diversity, professionalism, and quality.
- The students also established a social media presence for our channel in those first couple weeks. I assigned some of the students to be on my Social Media Team, essentially a few students I could trust with our Twitter account. After threatening with expulsion I allowed them to go get as many followers and raise awareness of the “new” news channel at Campus. Shortly after our first show the students reached our goal of 400 Twitter followers. You can follow us on Twitter and Snapchat @channel_060.
- Currently, my 32 students are arranged in teams (mainly for classroom management purposes). I have a leadership team consisting of the top students I had in all the following areas and they are a group I personally meet with most. The Social Media team with students I could trust. The Graphics/Audio team with my best graphic design students I had. The Graphics/Audio team make all our graphical elements and locate royalty-free music for us to use. Initially, I used an equipment team to get the broadcast room organized and inventory equipment because it was a disaster. Finally, my news team is the rest of everyone else I used to create/make story segments.
How many kids to do the morning news broadcast? Do you also do a weekly broadcast? Special events coverage?
- We currently only do a monthly-30 minute taped, news broadcast. We will be moving shortly to a bi-weekly 10-15 minute taped broadcast. We felt that 30-minutes was too long for our school. On our off weeks we also launched a short 5-7 minute show covering current events at Campus.
Do your students capture other school events? Sports? Assemblies? Board meetings? Musical Performances?
- As of right now we just have our Channel 060 news broadcast, the Weekly Trot, and we read daily announcement on the intercom system.
- We have looked into thecube.com to broadcast some school/sporting events for free online without announcers, just the game and score. We would love to develop this area further but it is a large time commitment. After I survive the first year, we will look at expanding.
What jobs do the students do? Do they rotate through on-air talent and crew positions or are they “hired” for a specific task?
- As I discussed earlier, most of our kids are on specific teams, but many fill various roles. I have a group of students who are really amazing. Some even spend extra time before/after school and even weekends to ensure our show is successful.
Do students audition for on-air positions?
- I have not auditioned for on-air positions. We will as our program grows.
Do they write the content?
- The students write, film, and edit almost all of the content. I do help with story leads and what I call “community relations”, projects and stories we do to please the school community.
How long does the show run?
- Our show is a monthly 30-minute show. We are changing this to a 10-15 minute bi-weekly show. We felt that 30 minutes was a little long in holding high school students’ attention.
Do you submit programming to independent contest such as those sponsored by NATAS?
- We have not submitted videos to contests yet. I am still trying to figure all of this out. As I settle in, I would like to extend the opportunity to compete to my students. I think there would be a strong interest amongst my students.
Can your broadcast be viewed outside the school? District-wide? Local cable access? On your school/district web-site?
- Absolutely. We load all of our videos on our YouTube channel: Channel 060. We also use this as means of delivery for our show to the school. All of the teachers in our building have access to YouTube. We have also partnered with our city government to broadcast our news show on their channel.
Where do you post programming? YouTube? Vimeo? SchoolTube? SVN-TV? Other?
- YouTube is our main location.
Do you have an equipment list you can share with our readers?
- It seems like we discover equipment on a daily basis, but here is the basic equipment we have:
- Classroom of 30x PC with Adobe Premiere Pro CC installed
- We purchased a background for our Channel 060 on eventstepandrepeat.com. It was a great price and purchase
- 3x Basic Camera Kits – Canon HD VIXIA Camera, Tripod, Wired-Lav Mic, Battery, Backpack
- 2x Advanced Camera Kits – Panasonic AG-AC7P Camera, Tripod, Wired Lav Mic, Battery, Backpack
- 1x Panasonic AG-AC8P Camera
- 2x Polson Wireless Lav Mic Systems
- 2x Targus Monopod
- 3x Sony Handheld Mics
- Several Memory Cards – 8GB, 16GB, & 32GB
- Studio Lighting – 4 Soft Box Lighting Systems, 2 other Loweltota lights
- I think lighting is our biggest shortfall at the moment. We need to purchase more lights.
Have any quick start tips!
- Wow…I learned so much from the schoolvideonews.com website, as well as others online. Unlike a lot of my other business classes, I felt that there are a lot of different resources online to help.
- I focused on trying to make my students understand that we had to produce news that was both entertaining and professional. I also expressed the desire to make our stories as diverse as we could to increase viewership.
- Keep an inventory list. We are still getting ours completed, but equipment and materials are very expensive. We used Cheqroom to help manage our news segment equipment (cameras, mics, tripods). We named our products by superhero names. For example, if someone takes the Batman Package, I know what camera, tripod, and mic they have.
- Give the students ownership in the channel. I have not encountered too many students who do not want to impress their friends and family with their work.
- Enjoy the process. I know Channel 060 will improve as we train and gain experience. It has been fun reflecting on all that we have accomplished in a little over three months. I love teaching this broadcasting class.