Quirindi High produces unique school podcast

On the air: Quirindi High journalism club members Lachlan Kollner, Joshua Redgrove, Grace Pezuto and Josie Saunders have taken on the world of podcasting and plan to go even bigger in the future. Photo: Chris Bath 030417CBA
On the air: Quirindi High journalism club members Lachlan Kollner, Joshua Redgrove, Grace Pezuto and Josie Saunders have taken on the world of podcasting and plan to go even bigger in the future. Photo: Chris Bath 030417CBA

Quirindi High School is on the airwaves and taking on new age media, as the journalism club wraps up its first term of weekly podcasts.

The four strong club is led by teacher Blake Hamilton, and the team have already put out eight episodes including a few specials surrounding important school events.

Club captain Josie Saunders heads up the team, which also includes fellow students Lachlan Kollner, Grace Pezuto and Joshue Redgrove, with the foursome sharing all the roles from sound engineer, to production and presentation and everything in between.

“It was a well established and passionate club that already worked on the school newsletter and did some things for the local paper,” Mr Hamilton said.

“We wanted to take that passion and integrate it into new technologies like podcasting and the students have done really well.” 

The weekly cast is recorded on Mondays and released on Wednesdays and already has a listenership above 40, although they are out to double that next term before adding even more strings to their bow.

“It is a great chance for the students to play around with different medians and have more tools in the tool kit for when they leave school,” Mr Hamilton said.

“There is not a lot of structure so the students have to show great initiative and organisation to go out on their own. They are all interested in careers in media and hopefully they will be work ready when they leave school.” 

The club is hoping to get their listenership up to at least 80 a week before they take on some other new media, including blogs.

Year ten student Josie is chasing a career in print and television journalism, and believes that the club and the podcasting can give her a valuable foot hold in her future career.

“I have a huge interest in journalism and thought it was a great idea to start the podcasts,” Josie said.

“Everyone is leaning more towards technology and going online for information so a school podcast is a great starting point.

“We have been getting a lot of interest from students in the school – especially from sports teams.

The podcast has been packed away for the term, with school holidays starting on Friday, although will be back bigger and better from the first week next term.

“It is a great way to learn to be a journo – working on my improvisation and confidence to go out and interview people,” Josie said.

“It is great and unique to have something like this directed at a large number of students.

“Hopefully we can incorporate a blog and add even more to the school website.”