A letter to KACHEA Members and Yearbook Participants from Kimberly Prillhart:
As many of you know, my last child is graduating this year and I will no longer be a homeschool mom. With that being said, this also means I will be retiring from my 12 years as Liberty Yearbook Editor. We had a volunteer that was interested in yearbook for next year, however, due to health issues within her family, and as a personal care giver for them, she will not have the ability to put the time or effort needed to add the role to her responsibilities.
This means we are still looking for someone to fill this leadership position in KACHEA. If there is no one willing or available to take over as Liberty Yearbook Editor, there will not be a 2018-19 yearbook next school year.
Before I pass the torch, I will definitely train you for the job. It is MUCH easier than you might think. I am also willing to remain on as advisor and help ensure the success of anyone interested in serving our homeschool community in this way. This means I will help you remember deadlines, assist in ideas and themes, and even work on pages that you need help with. You will have as much or as little help from me as you need or want.
For your consideration, I have put together a Q&A that will help you determine if you would be interested in taking on this role.
Q: How much time is involved?
A: You are free to determine how YOU want to run things, however, picture days will be the most time consuming of all. We typically ordered 4 days of pictures: DAY 1 was usually on a Friday for those that had classes that interfered on other days. DAY 2 was typically the following Monday for those that might have been out of town the week before, etc. DAY 3 was typically for seniors and their families only as this is a time factor with seniors changing into the drape or tux. It puts a strain on the day when underclassmen and their families have to wait on the time it takes for this picture to be done. DAY 4 was typically a make-up day scheduled several weeks after the first 3 days for anyone that was unhappy with their pictures or missed picture day all together. The length of time you want to give everyone is totally up to you, but to be successful you have people who can do morning, but not afternoon, or afternoon and not morning. You are free to make these days work better for you if they need to be changed.
Q: Where do I find a photographer?
A: Sadly, many independent photographers no longer do school pictures. This takes a lot of their time with very little profit. Mike Bowling has been gracious enough to do these as a favor to me. It is very possible that you will need to secure a new photographer for yearbook pictures. However, I will help you with this and offer advice if desired.
Q: What experience do I need?
A: The only qualification good to have would be compared to scrapbooking. If you are person that LOVES to scrapbook, this would be ideal and fun for you. Again, I can offer tips, ideas, and suggestions as needed. Also, you would need to know how to navigate around a desktop or laptop computer. Everything is done online and having some computer knowledge is a plus, but can easily be learned if you feel lacking in this area.
Q: Will there be a yearbook staff to help or will I do this on my own?
A: In this past the yearbook staff has been much larger than what we have had the past couple years or so. Because I have done this for several years it’s almost easier for me to just “get it done” than to train and work with new people each year. However, I NEVER want to deprive anyone of the opportunity to be involved in their yearbook memories and have typically let anyone that volunteered do so. I was also finding that the opportunity for outside classes, coops, and sports activities interfered with getting everyone together at one time to work on yearbook. The busyness made it difficult to get things accomplished and I ended up just doing it myself. Working with a staff is certainly something you can advertise for as much or as little as you desire.
Q: When do I need to work on putting the yearbook together?
A: You are you own boss! Some of my most creative ideas came at 2:00 AM, but obviously the time you decide to work on putting it together is totally up to you. There are certain deadlines that you will need to establish in order to keep your sanity, but you determine what is best for you and your schedule. The only deadline you need to meet is the date the yearbook must be submitted to Jostens for printing.
Q: Will I have to commit to this for the next 12 years as you have done?
A: No! The average life of a yearbook editor is 3-4 years, but there are certainly no contracts or commitments you must adhere to if you no longer wish to do the yearbook. I have just truly enjoyed it and did not mind to give back to my homeschool community in this way.
Q: What if I volunteer and then decide it’s not for me or I don’t have the time after all to do it?
A: Obviously, it would be ideal for someone to see it through at least for the next school year so a yearbook is available to our KACHEA members. If I can step in to help until you feel more confident to do this on your own I will be willing to do so. It is always difficult to take on something new when you don’t really know all the ins and outs of the job, and the learning curve can also take time. The first year you may wonder, “What in the world did I volunteer for?”, but once the initial training is over and you have accomplished putting it all together it will only get easier, faster, less time consuming, and hopefully a lot of fun.
I hope this will answer most of your questions, but if you have anything specific to ask in order to help you make a decision, please feel free to call or email me. Ideally, if someone came on board now you could see exactly what is involved and how the yearbook is put together. The more knowledge you can have now will only make things easier next school year when you will be in charge and I am your assistant and/or advisor. I don’t want YOU to fail! Many families look forward to yearbook, especially our seniors. I will support you, encourage you, train you, advise you, be available for you, and cheer for you ALL the way.
Please let me know if you are interested in looking at the process or volunteering for the position.