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Western Plains Journalism Department wins State Sweepstakes for Second year in a Row


For the second year in a row, the journalism department at Western Plains High School has been named a statewide sweepstakes champion in the 27th annual KanSPRA/KASB Publications Contest.

WPHS journalists were awarded the top honors in the category of schools with enrollment up to 499 students. Other enrollment categories included enrollments of 1000-1699, 1700-4999, and over 5000 students.

“To win this award even once is a very impressive- to win two years in a row is just incredible. I am beyond proud of how well our journalists represent our school and overjoyed that others see their talent as well,” commented advisor Amy Schmidt.

Schools were given the opportunity to submit various school relations in a variety of categories, including audio/visual, newsletters, photo/photo series, calendar/handbook, websites/social media, electronic publication, writing materials, and marketing materials/special purpose publication.

Awards of Excellence were given to entries scoring an average of “9,” and Certificates of Merit were awarded to publications with an average score of at least “6.” In addition, the contest awarded a “Sweepstakes Award” in each enrollment category, based on the highest average score of all submissions by the participating district.

Entries for WPHS included the class-produced school newspaper Cat Tracks (Award of Excellence); a photo collage of the boys basketball team, created by Marteah Morgan (Certificate of Merit); an article by Carlee Flax about the Ransom fires (Certificate of Merit); the school’s website and social media sites (Award of Excellence); and various promotional materials (Award of Excellence).

“To win this contest for the second year in a row speaks incredibly highly of our student journalists,” commented Schmidt. “The amount of talent they possess, combined with how hard they work, makes them incredibly deserving of such an award. To be such a small school and win two years in a row- that makes it even more special. It really shows what special talent we have in our school and demonstrates that small schools are capable of accomplishing amazing feats.”

Great job to the WPHS journalists, both past and present. It is exciting to see such a strong tradition of journalistic excellence at the school.