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October 17, 2018

Praise for rookie reporters on Journalism workshop in London

A DAY-long journalism workshop in London was the prize for pupils from Fearns after producing the best newspaper in the country.

The ninth edition of Fearns Chat won two prestigious trophies in the national Shine School Media Awards competition in July, best newspaper and best front cover.

As well as winning £1,000 for the school, three pupils were invited to attend a workshop at TES magazine, formerly Times Educational Supplement.

Fearns Chat reporters Year 9 pupils Elleina Pickup and Bethany Parker along with Tanita Sims, a former pupil who is now studying Alevels at Bury College, got tips from experienced reporters and took part in a variety of tasks to stimulate their interest in the career.

They were joined by sixth form students from St Joseph’s College, Ipswich, who won with Vox - Best Online publication and Ibstock Place School,London, who won Best Magazine with The Wall, both fee-paying schools.

They learnt how to sub copy, check for errors, write headlines and interview as well as title, design and pitch a new magazine.

Tanita said: “I found it really interesting. It proved to me that I can write a news story on my own.

“Between the three of us, we wrote a headline for the headteachers’ protest on Downing Street that was happening that day and the journalists said they would have used it.”

Bethany really enjoyed it when she played the role of Ed Sheeran for a mock interview where Tanita and Elleina posed the questions.

Elleina said: “I found some of the workshops quite challenging. I liked the comments Bethany came out with when she was being Ed Sheeran; the things she came up with were hilarious.”

Tanita added: “I don’t have a lot of self-belief, but this made me realise that I am thinking about the right career for me.”

Her edgy report on the Ed Sheeran exposé also won praise from the journalists.

As Bethany and Elleina were making their first trip to London, after the workshop they managed a whistle-stop tour of the sights, from Tower Bridge to the Houses of Parliament, Trafalgar Square to Downing Street.

The 10th anniversary edition of Fearns Chat was produced at the school in June.