POINT PLEASANT — Point Pleasant Junior/Senior High School welcomes a new broadcasting opportunity for the students and a way for sports enthusiasts to be more involved with high school sports.
Andy Layton, a teacher at PPJSHS, is leading a group of students in a broadcasting group. This group usually meets after school and during sporting functions. Comprised of mostly eighth and ninth graders, the group has recently started a broadcast network that airs on the National Federation of High Schools (NFHS) Network.
This broadcasting group airs Point Pleasant sporting, and some non-sporting, events live on the air through the NFHS website.
PPJSHS has been on the air for a few months but is starting to expand.
“The students are getting real-life journalism, broadcasting, and technical experience in high school, as well as experience in marketing and advertising,” Layton said. “Over the past few weeks our viewers have tripled; it’s starting to really pick up. Starting last week, the kids have taken over much of the responsibilities and I haven’t had to be in charge as much, its really been fun watching the kids take off.”
According to Layton: “Many of the kids are learning as they go, especially some of the girls will admit they didn’t come into this group because they knew a lot about sports and many of the kids have really come out of their shells and realized they have a talent for something they wouldn’t have known they had without this group.”
The NFHS website reaches out to high schools and give this program to the schools for free. Individuals may also subscribe to watch high school sporting events or other events that would be uploaded onto the site.
“NFHS hosts everything but we have had to purchase our own equipment but all the broadcasts we do is run through them,” said Layton.
As of now, this is a group that kids volunteer to be a part of but Layton said next year this will become an actual class at PPJSHS.
“This year students can join for credits towards community service but next year, I am going to make broadcasting an actual class and I’m looking forward to seeing how much the students grow,” he said.
According to Layton, this is the first time PPJSHS has offered broadcasting.
“As far as I know PPHS has never offered something like this, they offered a film studies class but nothing like this, where it is hands on live production,” he said.
Most of the students revealed that they wanted to join this broadcasting group because they liked sports, a few others revealed they joined for other reasons:
“I am doing this for credits,” Breanna Stanley said.
Layton stated that he believed Stanley has “natural broadcasting speaking voice and has a real knack for talking.” He added, “She may have joined because she was looking for credits but she has a real talent for this. She could be our future voice of the school.”
Grace Teichman who runs the camera for the broadcasting group said, “I wanted to join because I thought it would be really interesting to do something where I could be in control or a student can be in control. We have guidance to help us along the way but we are learning by our experience and no one is hovering over us.”
Student Kadann Bonecutter said: “I really like to talk for one thing and I really like being involved and getting my name out there by putting different things to put on my resume. I also like sports in general too. I have really enjoyed commentating. I just like being involved with sports and I like being involved with the advertising aspect too.”
Luke Blaine who contributes to the play-by-play explains why he joined broadcasting: “I do love sports so that is one reason why I am in here but another reason is I feel like this is something that I would like to do in the future. It seems like something I could actually have a career in after high school and college. I like the relationships you get to build while doing commentary and working alongside the other people. It kind of helps you build past adversity on the spot. There had been many times in the past where we would over run each other while we were talking. It helps us build relationships and chemistry with other people and working through that too.”