SAN ANGELO, Texas – When most people think about morning announcements at school they think of hearing a fellow classmate or teacher read off a paper through the intercom. However, some schools like to do their announcements a little bit differently.
Every morning at San Angelo Independent School District’s McGill Elementary, a few students and their director of 13 years, J.D. Ward, cast the morning announcements into every classroom across campus as a news show. This show, known as KKME, is made up of eight fifth-grade students that run all aspects. These positions include an anchor, co-anchor, a weatherman, and four others manning the production of the show like the teleprompter and audio.
Ward shared with Concho Valley Homepage staff that these students had to go through a three-step process in order to get the chance to inform and connect with the mustang community.
“When they audition for this they have to audition on video,” Ward explained. “I have teachers from outside of our school and our admin here that watch the videos.”
While these judges watch the auditions, they mark different criteria off a list that is provided by Ward. “They go through there and check, then it goes through an algorithm that pulls out my eight highest ones so they are the ones selected for the show,” Ward said. “We have anywhere from 14 to 18 kids that apply in the beginning.”
Once kids are selected, they start learning how to produce and star in a KKME morning show.
This one-of-a-kind morning show features many things throughout the week according to Ward. On Mondays, a list of events is shared with the students by anchors to help raise awareness of what is happening at McGill Elementary. Teachers and staff also appear on the show for weekly segments such as the principal’s “CC Talk” on Fridays.
Ward explained that during these special Friday segments, Principal Colton Curtis has interactive sessions where the students call in from their classroom to answer a question. Anchors and co-anchors also share idioms, birthday shout-outs and fun facts about science and history.
“It does not matter if they are in kindergarten or fifth grade, they pick up things from the show,” said Ward. “There is a lot of things that even as a teacher I learn from watching.”
Although this news program has come a long way, new plans on ways it can expand and grow with the school campus are underway. With money recently raised by McGill Elementary’s Student Council President Jayden Tapia, KKME will get the chance to expand the program to better suit the students and faculty.
“A lot of things that go through KKME are to promote positive interactions between our students and our staff,” Ward shared.