High Point magazine honored

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High Point Regional High School received word on Jan. 18 that its literary and arts magazine, ​Calliope 2017: Safe Harbors,​ was selected by the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) to receive the rank of Recommended for the Highest Award, an honor that only six other New Jersey high schools received. ​

Calliope is co-advised by Erin Meyers (Fine Arts teacher) and Heather Strout (English teacher). Last year’s student editor was Kate Gervey; Leah Eddy was the senior illustrator.

Each year in June, High Point’s ​Calliope is entered into NCTE’s PRESLM (Program to Recognize Excellence in School Literary Magazines) contest. The goal of this rigorous competition, according to the NCTE website, is to “recognize and highlight excellence in writing” and “encourage schools to develop literary magazines [that involve]... participation in a school-wide production.”

At the start of each school year, ​Calliope staff members brainstorm theme/chapter concepts, which are then narrowed down and voted on. The editor-in-chief makes sure the theme lends itself to the chapter breakdown. Each of the six chapters has a sub-theme based on a "big idea" (for example - nature, love, family, etc.). Student submissions (hard copy or electronic) are gathered, voted upon, and placed into the chapters that are the best fit for them. Each chapter is ordered in a meaningful way, where the literary works and the artistic pieces complement each other to create a cohesive experience for readers.

The art work in ​Calliope is selected from a variety of both two dimensional works, three dimensional work, and photography. An illustrator is selected to create the cover and chapter art. The illustrative work is done in either pencil or pen, and work must be created to adorn the front cover, the back cover, the spine, the chapter beginnings, and the bookmark. Once the student work has been selected, it is photographed, digitized and placed into the the chapters based on the theme of ​Calliope.

Last year's creation,​ Calliope 2017: Safe Harbors , featured a nautical theme and 191 pages of thoughtful, high-quality work. It contained artwork and creative writing crafted by over eighty members of High Point’s student body. Each year, the staff works diligently to make sure the publication represents student voices from all walks of life. Minisink Press in Newton, NJ, has been in charge of printing ​Calliope for the past several years. They always do an outstanding job helping the co-advisors to select paper, cover stock, color, and ink choices that are artistically sound.

Calliope has a history of earning awards and accolades. Since 2007, the publication has earned First Place (sometimes with “Special Merit”) from the American Scholastic Press Association, as well as numerous distinctions from the National Council of Teachers of English. In 2012, Calliope won the Highest Award from the National Council of Teachers of English.

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