Kolt News is not just a daily announcement show for the students at Cottonwood High School, it is much more than that. TV Broadcasting is the class that students take to learn how to run a news show. Students also learn about how to edit and put videos together for Kolt News. In that class, the students are assigned jobs like producer, cameras, teleprompter and much more. Mr. Maeser, the teacher, helps the kids learn their jobs. The students come together to create the show. Kolt News is made by students for students. Mr. Maeser is the overseer – making sure everything runs smoothly. Kolt News is about school announcements, but it’s also for entertainment. The students are supposed to have fun while creating the show but also while watching it.
Colt Roundup got an exclusive interview with the infamous Stan Maeser, the teacher of classes such as basic digital photography, commercial art, and TV broadcasting. “Eight years ago, the principal at the time wanted me to take over Kolt News and the TV broadcasting class. I felt it was the best option for me because if I didn’t, I might have been transferred to different school in the district. I wanted to stay at Cottonwood, so I agreed to take over. At that time Kolt News was an announcement show filmed once a week and put on Youtube. It was optional, so I don’t think a lot of the teachers would show it to their classes. The principal wanted Kolt News to be a live show done everyday to inform the school about current events going on at Cottonwood.”
Mr. Maeser told Colt Roundup, “Kolt News is a CTE class – TV Broadcasting, I have to give out a test at the end of the semester so that the school can get funding. When I first started Kolt News it wasn’t a CTE class, so the kids could be more creative and have more fun with it. Now with the state test requirements, the curriculum is much more business like. My major in college was art. Before I was at Cottonwood I was teaching art classes at the old Granite High School. When Granite closed down, I transferred here with intent to be an art teacher. My background is not in technology, especially not TV broadcasting. Television is not really a natural interest for me, it’s more of a necessity than fun. If I had the chance to teach art again instead of television, I would.”
Kolt News seems to be a very debated topic throughout Cottonwood. Colt Roundup walked around the halls of Cottonwood and asked students if they watched Kolt News. Over 50% of the kids said they do watch it, but only if the teacher puts it on, and that rarely happens.
Colt Roundup asked Mr. Maeser what he thought the conflict was with the teachers and Kolt News, “Conflict is too harsh of a word. The reality is that the teachers have problems with Kolt News but won’t express those problems to me. Teachers either turn it completely off and or bad mouth to their students. Teachers have this warped perspective of what Kolt News is supposed to be, they think in two extremes, announcements or entertainment, nothing in between.”
Kolt News is a show for the students and teachers to get information about school activities, but the students can also have fun while creating something. It doesn’t have to be that serious. At the end of the day Kolt News is a show made by students for students.