On Monday and Tuesday evening, Liberty County School System students and parents celebrated the ranking of more than 80 media festival projects that were rated superior last month at the Georgia Student Media Festival.
“We sent 150 projects to the Georgia state media festival and 83 of those scored a superior score of 96 or higher,” LCSS media coordinator Jaime Rearley said.
Students were welcomed as “stars” when they entered the Liberty County Performing Arts Complex and walked on a red carpet decorated on both sides with trails of Hollywood stars bearing the students’ name.
“The Georgia Student Media Festival celebrates outstanding student-produced media projects. Student projects are viewed and scored at an all-day session held at Georgia Public Broadcasting,” according to the organization’s website.
“Every year, hundreds of students in all grades in Georgia produce media projects and submit them for judging, first in local and then system festivals. Projects scoring 96 or higher advance to the Georgia Student Media Festival. Projects are judged for their excellence in production, writing, creativity, lighting and impact.”
The auditorium was jam-packed as Superintendent Dr. Judy Scherer took to the stage and thanked parents and students for their hard work and for attending the event.
“We’re so proud of your children and we’re so happy you were able to come out tonight and celebrate with us,” Scherer told the audience of more than 100 people.
Parents, students and staff filled every seat and lined the walls of the room as the reels began rolling, showcasing just a minute of each student’s clip. Students — from high school through elementary school — strolled across the stage and received certificates and trophies for their efforts as the reel played.
Since the beginning of the school year, students were asked to work individually or with classmates to produce multimedia projects to be graded on a school-wide level. Projects that scored 96 and above then were sent to the countywide and statewide competitions. The next step is the international level, and the system will know the results by October, Rearley said.
Keniyah Bell, 8, worked on a game show simulation with classmates, something her mother, Chari Bell, said she truly enjoyed taking part in both inside and outside the classroom.
“She is so creative. She thinks outside of the box,” Bell said of her daughter, who attends Taylors Creek Elementary. “I’m so proud. I try to see her use her imagination, and she loves to get recognized for stuff. She toots her own horn. She loves it.”
Bell’s aunt, Candle Johnson, said she also was proud of her niece for her efforts and is pleased to see the school system recognizing the hard work of good students.
“It’s nice for the kids to be acknowledged and it’s important for them to know there are rewards for things because as they get older, their hard work pays off.”
Individual trophies were awarded to students who produced individual projects and to those who participated in groups of five or fewer peers. Class projects received one classroom trophy.
Even though summer break is right around the corner, students — some of whom worked on their projects all year — will be looking forward to the release of the judging results in October.
“I think the media festival is a way to enrich their education process,” Rearley said. “Really, to do a good project, it takes months. It’s really an intense process.”