COVINA, CA – Northview High School’s Fine Arts, Media, and Entertainment (FAME) pathway, which has led students to careers at KTLA, CBS, ABC, and Disney, has won the California School Boards Association (CSBA) Golden Bell Award for its approach to fostering student excellence in media arts and broadcast journalism.
This four-year pathway, in partnership with PBS Newshour Student Reporting Labs, Atlas Digital, and KQED Education, teaches students a range of essential skills such as journalism, media literacy, camera composition, editing, story development, character creation, screenwriting, interviewing, and more.
“The FAME program is really unique because the students have so many opportunities, both with real-world learning and professional experience, to express themselves creatively,” FAME teacher Amy Woods said. “They are learning a skill set that is highly transferrable and can help them go into any career or college path they may choose – it’s pretty limitless.”
Students in the FAME program have the opportunity to produce their school’s biweekly video news program, Viking Vision. The pathway culminates with a senior-year capstone project in which students develop a story idea and execute the entire project, from pre-production to delivery, in small production teams. The various projects throughout the pathway allow students to tell stories from a youth perspective.
The FAME program also provides students with professional certification opportunities, college articulation, field trips, workshops, guest speaker appearances, and professional feedback on content creation – all of which contribute to students being college and career ready after graduation.
Northview senior and Viking Vision director Joshua Cortez said the FAME program allows students to grow throughout the program, both individually and as a production team.
“My favorite part of the FAME program is the togetherness of the class and the way we are able to communicate and work together to produce great content,” Cortez said. “We have the opportunity as high schoolers to work with state-of-the-art equipment that major colleges and production companies use.”
In addition to providing students with hands-on experience, the program also gives them valuable contacts with professionals in the industry for internships and careers in journalism and entertainment. FAME alumni have gone on to work at broadcast companies and on feature films such as “Babylon,” “King Richard,” “Mank,” and more.
Cortez plans to attend film school after he graduates to further the skills and connections he has made throughout the FAME program. He said he hopes to go on to direct major motion pictures that play on the big screen.
Woods said winning the Golden Bell Award is a great honor and validation of all the hard work students have dedicated to the program.
“Our program has gotten increasingly better over the years to meet the growing passions and needs of our students,” Woods said. “Winning the Golden Bell award will allow us to share our great program with other schools and serve as an example of all the opportunities we can give our students to help them reach their college and career goals and dreams.”
Woods, along with other Covina-Valley Unified School District staff, accepted the Golden Bell Award on behalf of the FAME program at a special ceremony on Dec. 1 at the annual California School Boards Association conference in San Diego.
“We are incredibly proud of the great accomplishment our FAME program has achieved in winning the Golden Bell Award,” Superintendent Dr. Elizabeth Eminhizer said. “This success validates our mission of providing our students with educational excellence and shines a light on just one of the many amazing programs our students have the opportunity to pursue.”
CVUSD_FAME1: Northview High School Fine Arts, Media, and Entertainment (FAME) program teacher Amy Woods accepts the Golden Bell Award at the annual California School Boards Association conference in San Diego. The FAME program is being recognized for its excellence in media arts and broadcast journalism.
CVUSD_FAME2: Northview High School FAME students choose which jobs they are most passionate about in video production and hone those skill sets by producing the school’s Viking Vision news program. The FAME program provides professional training in media arts and was recently recognized with a Golden Bell Award for excellence.
CVUSD_FAME3: Northview High School FAME students anchor the filming of a Viking Vision segment. The FAME program provides professional training in media arts and was recently recognized with a Golden Bell Award for excellence.