MALE Pandemic’s First Draft

From the Magnificent to the Murky and the Mundane, Scholastic Media Continue Publishing Despite Closure


  • Bradley Wilson Midwestern State University



Scholastic media advisers faced unique challenges during the pandemic. Almost immediately, schools were shut down and students were blocked from access to files necessary to complete the yearbook or to create a newspaper. Along the way, teachers were forced to provide instruction online. At some schools, instructors were threatened with termination if they accessed their classroom. Others were told that the yearbook—the only official record of school history from a student perspective—wasn’t a priority. But through it all, many student media operations continued, often moving online but still meeting deadlines and providing the first draft of history from a student perspective. According to a survey of 237 scholastic media advisers, some school newspapers and other media even published more often during the pandemic than they had before. Still, advisers said there was one thing they wished they had—a better plan.