See the “News” at Northeast: Booker T. Washington’s visit with George Eastman

• February 22, 2013

One of my aims as a Make City Schools blogger is to highlight positive initiatives and projects taking place in the RCSD. One such initiative is the Northeast College Preparatory High School’s MTS (Media Technology Studies) program.

With a high quality computer graphics lab,an array of media equipment, and a top notch faculty with real world production and news experience, students both study and create high level video. In addition, the Advanced Video Production class periodically reports about news and entertainment at the school. For example, one report covered a press conference held by Superintendent Vargas on the Douglass Campus.

Recently, I had the opportunity to participate.

A year ago I wrote a Democrat and Chronicle Guest Essay on a dinner between George Eastman and Booker T. Washington at the Eastman House in the early 1900s.  The next time I was at Northeast, Laura Barstow and her class proposed we make a newscast based on the essay, including an imaginative recreation of the dinner.

So, a few weeks later, tripods and cameras in tow, we made a field trip to the Eastman House where students took shots and where given a tour. Soon after, they recorded me reading the essay, as well as briefly filmed me speaking at an outdoor spot near the school.

All fine and good, but still I fretted. In my perception, the class seemed a little too blase about the project. Were they really engaged, or was I just seeing the studied cool of the teenager? Could they pull it off?

When the video was done, I had my answer. Judge yourself how the kids did Booker T. Washington at the George Eastman House