Tuesday, 20 November 2012

The Wyvern: 3 years in the making

Unfortunately we are currently unsure about the actual date when the current school newspaper was set up. What we think is that we were first told to set a newspaper up on the 19th November 2009 yet the first word didn't go into the publication until the 20th November 2009.

The first 2 editions of the newspaper were quite messy in the way the stories were put together so the quality wasn't the best however pupils were interested and they read it. The newspaper was called “Read All About It!!” at this time and the number of journalist writing for it was growing steadily.

During the first quarter of 2010 I remember having a meeting and everyone deciding that the newspaper should change it’s name to the ‘Branksome Bugle’. Although the name changed and the quality improved we still used the same style of publication so we could maximise the number of articles published and not waste paper.

3 teachers which have helped the Branksome Bugle loads were Mrs Surtees (who was the librarian), Mr Coyne (who was the deputy head teacher) and Mr Haylock (who is a science teacher). All 3 of these teachers supported the school newspaper from the start and although 2 of them are not working at DSMS any more their guidance and assistance was very much appreciated.

One of the biggest things the newspaper has done since it was first set-up is supporting the British Lung Foundation on trying to get smoking banned in cars if there is a passenger under the age of 18. We first met the British Lung Foundation at the Darlington Memorial Hospital in the summer of 2010 when they were first launching the campaign. They got a full page article in the Branksome Bugle explaining to people what it was and what the damages of smoking were.
At the beginning of March the following year we got invited down to London for a day by the BLF as they wanted some children to hand their petition of 15,000 signatures to 10 Downing Street. So after a tour around the Houses of Parliament we went to the gates of Downing Street where the selected 5 pupils went down to number 10 to knock on the Prime Ministers door.

When Branksome Science College got a new headteacher the school changed its name to ‘Darlington School of Mathematics and Science’, DSMS for short. To make sure that the past was left behind teachers thought it might be a wise idea to change the name of the school newspaper. ‘The Wyvern’ is what we changed it to. A Wyvern is a dragon like mythical creature which was the old School logo back when the School was just called ‘Branksome’.

2012 has been an amazing year for the Wyvern because during March they took on their biggest challenge yet by starting a School TV Show using a new TV Studio at DSMS. Since then the Wyvern team has made 6 episodes and interviewed someone every episode. The Wyvern TV comes out monthly and it covers both school, local, regional and national news. The team is always open for advice and ideas. Watch the Wyvern TV here: click me!

The Wyvern experienced most success ever this year when 4 members of the Wyvern editing team went down to London for 2 days to receive a Shine Award. The 4 members made up of Liam (editor), Katie (journalist), Rebecca (head journalist) and Sam (head of sport). They stayed in central London with the London eye on their doorstep. The event took place at Stationers Hall near St. Paul's Cathedral and the outstanding team walked away with the award for the ‘Most Outstanding Pupil’.

In the future I hope that the number of journalists writing and reporting for the Wyvern increases as most of the current writers are in Year 10/11 and will therefore be leaving soon. In the time that the current team does spend at DSMS, I hope we meet and interview lots more people for the Wyvern TV, I hope the Wyvern newspaper maintains its current high quality and I hope we win another Shine Award at London.

So that concludes my post for you about the Wyvern, thank you for reading and supporting. See you next edition :)