NEWPORT NEWS, Va. - As part of National News Literacy Week, we invited Newport News Woodside High School junior Robbie Pritchett to produce a story to air on News 3.
Robbie is in the Arts and Communications Magnet Program at Woodside. He grew up watching news, and his father has worked in the media for several years, including a time with us at News 3.
Robbie's news interest grew during the 2020 election cycle. He says he visited several news sites daily. His instructor Reginald Crudup says Robbie is the editor of the school’s weekly television production and well known for his rigorous fact checking.
Robbie produced a story that looks ahead at the first 100 days of the Biden administration. He hopes his story will make adults more open minded to the views of the younger generation.
Newport News Public Schools run several "magnet programs." One of the more popular courses is the Center for Arts and Communication at Woodside High School.
Reginald Crudup and Anthony Mata teach in the program and student journalist Robbie Pritchett is in the Communications program. The program has an emphasis on television broadcasting and video editing. Students learn television production, video editing, journalism, technology and public relations.
They take 4 courses in sequence:
VIDEO & MEDIA TECHNOLOGY
Grade Level: 9-10
This course offers students an opportunity to study all aspects of video and media productions, from planning and writing for production to operating studio and editing equipment. Students practice various methods of gathering news and information from individuals, research and online resources. In addition, students are introduced to analog and digital principles of film production.
TV & MEDIA PRODUCTION I
Grade Level: 10-11
Students will learn how to think and work like media producers by engaging hands-on production projects. Students will also gain proficiency with the media production process while using industry-standard tools. They will explore jobs and careers in the dynamic and growing industry of television and media production and understand the impact of media and its function as entertainment, persuasion, information and instruction.
HONORS TV & MEDIA PRODUCTION II
Grade Level: 11-12
Students will become media producers as they take real-world projects from conception to production. They will continue to develop and master skills that are essential to the industry as they function in various professional roles. In addition, the students will gain both breadth and depth in their abilities with the sophisticated tools and equipment involved in professional media production. They will develop an increased understanding of post secondary and career pathways and will develop plans and portfolios to help them achieve their goals.
HONORS TV & MEDIA PRODUCTION III
Grade Level: 12
Students will demonstrate mastery of media production knowledge and skills. They will function as media producers by creating original productions as they develop and market programs for target audiences. Students will assemble a professional digital portfolio to advance post secondary and career goals. Students will assemble a professional digital portfolio to advance post secondary and career goals. They will investigate the dynamic media production industry and identify opportunities for real world experiences (e.g. , internship, job shadowing). Students will research post secondary opportunities and formulate strategies for both college and career success.
News 3 also spoke with teachers, Reginald Crudup and Anthony Mata.
Crudup said students have to apply to get into the communications magnet, so he usually gets kids from 9th to 12th grade.
He said during 9th grade “they’ll come in and learn all the basics you know who what when where why and how, how to write a news story how to set up a tripod, learn all the positions and roles in a newsroom and as they get higher in grades they start to do more they start creating PDS or a package or a music video.”
Crudup added, “I teach it like news I always say this is like our newsroom so we have a table we all sit around and have our production meetings and everything just like you would in a newsroom.”
Mata said the way the magnet program is formulated, it gives people opportunities from the start. The program supports the rest of the magnets so when events like art shows, live concerts and talent shows are going on in the evening the students are involved in the various aspects of the production process, he added.
When talking about the impact of the program Crudup said, “We have students who are working in the industry. We have students working at Entertainment Tonight, students at MTV, students working at some of the local stations, so there are a lot of students in college or working in the industry programs."