BY NANCY GAGNET | MIRROR REPORTER — While the coronavirus left many scrambling at the end of the 2020 school year, the students tasked with putting together Maumee High School’s annual yearbook sprang into action to finish assembling a book that turned out to be one of the best yet.
In fact, the school recently received the 2020 National Yearbook Program of Excellence Award from Jostens, one of the leading producers of yearbooks and student-created content. MHS is one of only eight schools in Ohio to earn the award and one of 94 recognized nationally.
Students Sophie King and Shae Kiser, who both graduated in the spring, served as editors. Yearbook advisor and social studies teacher Jamie Naragon said that all of the students working on the yearbook were exceptional in adjusting to the challenges the virus posed.
“We had to get really creative and we had to improvise,” she said.
For example, the pages earmarked for events such as prom, the spring musical and sports were canceled, and the students had to find new content to fill those pages, Naragon said.
“When those pages didn’t happen, we had to adapt to what those pages could be used for,” she said.
The students created a COVID-19 section, community responses, student ads and senior messages. Making it even more difficult was that all of the communication had to be done virtually.
“It turned out really well, considering everything we had to go through,” Naragon said.
To assemble the yearbook, Naragon meets with the editors the summer before school begins to discuss the concept for it. For the 2020 book, she along with Sophie and Shea attended a camp hosted by Jostens to design a cover and layout and develop the theme, ultimately choosing the title of Flying Through Time.
They also focused on promoting ad sales to offset cost of the book as well as having every student pictured in the book two to three times.