Each school year, for 34 weeks, Areawide Media and 20 local businesses sponsor a program called Newspaper in Education. This program puts 471 newspapers into the hands of school children in Salem, Viola, Mammoth Spring, Thayer, Mo., Highland Middle School, Cherokee Elementary School, Williford and Evening Shade.
These schools use the newspaper each week to help students learn a variety of skills including reading and math, as well as teaching them how to stay informed about events that happen in their community.
Teachers in the NIE schools say that Thursday is called Paper Day in their classroom and students are always anxious to read the local paper each week. These newspapers are then taken home by the students to share with their family.
This year, March 3-7, is Newspaper in Education Week. This special observance gives us the opportunity to thank the many teachers who use The News, The South Missourian News and the Villager Journal in their classrooms as well as the business sponsors who help provide a newspaper to the students.
Sponsors who help send the Villager Journal to schools in Sharp County are: First National Banking Company, CenturyTel, Bank of Cave City, Brien Hall and Julea Garner, MD, Sharp Office Supply, KSAR 92.3, The River 98.3, KOOL 104.7, LaDonna's Furniture Decor and More, and Tri-County Farm and Ranch.
Sponsors who send The News to Salem and Viola schools and The South Missourian News to schools in Mammoth Spring and Thayer, Mo., are: First National Banking Company, CenturyTel, North Arkansas Electric Cooperative, Great Southern Bank, Bank of Thayer, Hirsch Feed and Farm Supply, Hughes-Welch and Milligan, Fulton County Hospital, Perryman and Perryman Auction Company and Perryman Realty, and Salem Drug Company.
Together, these sponsors pay 33 percent of the cost of a newspaper subscription and Areawide Media takes care of the remaining costs. It's a project Areawide Media is proud to be a part of.
Debra Perryman is the NIE coordinator for Areawide Media. Each year she helps schedule special series articles for publication that teachers can use as part of their weekly classroom program. In addition, a SOS (Stamp Out Smoking) coloring contest is held with numerous prizes awarded to students.
NIE is a cooperative effort between our schools, our sponsors and Areawide Media to promote the use of newspapers as an educational resource. The Arkansas Press Association, the Missouri Press Association, the National Newspaper Association and the Newspaper Association of America Foundation provide material used in this program.
Anyone interested in learning more about NIE can contact Perryman at 870-895-3207 or 800-995-3209.