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Don’t let death derail your publication

Posted by on Oct 19, 2012 in Blog, Law and Ethics, News, Scholastic Journalism, Teaching | 1 comment


by Mary Kay Downes

The loss of any student is a tragic event either through sickness, accident or suicide.

Often times staffs are shocked when events such as this occur and frozen into either inaction or precipitous action. They ask, “Do we cover this?”  They ask,  “How do we cover this?” They ask, “Should we call the parents?”

All of these are questions which can be taken care of by establishing a policy by the editorial board for inclusion in the staff manual having to do with death.  We have a policy in our yearbook staff manual and it precludes any type of memorial page.

We include a picture of the deceased student in the senior section of the yearbook the year they would have graduated. It is in a box with year of birth and death. If a faculty member dies, we include a similar box in the faculty section of the current year’s book.

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