Betsy Scrivener: Read all about it! Student newspaper revived

Published 8:53 am Monday, April 4, 2016

Students at Elizabethton High School are exercising their rights to freedom of speech and press and are preparing to release a completely digital newspaper.
“The Betsy Scrivener is not only a rebranding, but also a revival of the EHS newspaper,” said faculty advisor and library media specialist Dustin Hensley.
A school newspaper is important for multiple reasons, Hensley explained.
“It helps teach them about the fundamentals of journalism, such as using sources, independent researching and investigating and writing with integrity,” he said. “It gives students an outlet to share their voices with both the school and local community.”
The publication will be a completely digital news source found online at, and Hensley said it will be updated daily beginning in the next school year.
“In regards to this being an online news source, it helps teach students about digital citizenship and how living in the digital age does not have to be negative, but online writing can be a positive experience for all involved.”
Newspaper Staff members will take a new Newspaper Journalism class beginning in the 2016-17 school year to learn about the essentials of news writing. Eight student writers and photographers will be a member of the 2016-17 news staff along with one student editor, Amy Cross. Hensley said some students who are unable to take the class will also be contributors. The official staff of the 2016-17 Scrivener include Cross, Brandon Gobble, Haley Jaynes, Maddie Lasater, Breanna Little, Ryan Miller, Victoria Oxborrow, Kaeli Sams and Megan Young.
The name was suggested by a student after reading the Herman Melville classic “Bartleby the Scrivener.”
“The Betsy Scrivener will work closely with the EHS Yearbook staff and share resources to ensure that all school events are being properly covered,” said Hensley.
Though the class does not officially begin till next school year, one article is already posted, and Hensley said more will be added throughout Spring and Summer.
The content will cover school news like sports, events, student and teacher spotlights and scholastic achievement, as well as community news.
“For students to truly understand their place in the world, it is important for them to first understand where they belong in their school and in their local community,” said Hensley.
By working with local organizations like the Elizabethton/Carter County Chamber of Commerce, they will follow local stories and interview the community members involved.
Additionally, Hensley will be restarting the charter for the Quill and Scroll Journalism Honor Society next year. EHS became a charter member of the society in 1969, but Hensley said at some point, it dissolved. Members of yearbook and newspaper staff may be nominated by their advisors and must meet educational requirements to be inducted. When they graduate, they are corded and recognized for receiving the honor.

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