HOLTON HIGH SCHOOL journalists win at State Contests

LAWRENCE, May 2, 2020 – The Kansas Scholastic Press Association is proud to announce the winners of the 2020 State Contest, which rewarded the best student journalism from around the state. To earn the chance to compete in the State Contest, students qualified through Regional Contests in February.


Despite school cancelations and unforeseen circumstances, in this year’s digital state contest, students from  1A-6A schools competed in 23 different categories in three different classifications.


In the State Contest, which was moved to an online format this year in response to the novel coronavirus pandemic,    student qualifiers from across the state competed in 23 different categories in three different classifications. KSPA awarded more than 350 awards for entries into the contest.


From Holton High School, the following students won awards in the 3A/4A division:


Tymber Klahr (freshman) 6th Feature Writing.

Sydney Althauser (sophomore) 1st Academics photo;
Ashlynn Herd (junior) 6th Photo Illustration;
Kinsley Watkins (junior) 1st Student Life Photo;

Allison Campbell (junior) 3rd Editing and 3rd Newswriting;
Olivia Yingst (senior) 2nd Headline Writing;
Aaran McAllister (senior) 4th Editorial Writing;


KSPA hosted the competitions digitally. Former on-site contests including copy editing and sports writing moved online. Students used notes provided in prompts to inspire their writing and cartooning entries.


Earlier in the week, students submitted hundreds of other entries – in 12 different categories – to an online contest that featured design, photography and online categories.


“Teaching students the bedrock skills of writing, editing, designing and photography is what our contest is all about,” said Eric Thomas, KSPA executive director. “The judges for the contest look for solid grasp of the fundamentals first and then seek entries that go above and beyond with creativity. This year’s winners showcased both creative excellence and solid skills.”


Based on the combined scores of the students from each school, KSPA names a Sweepstakes Champion for each school enrollment size. This year, Holton finished third in 4A State Sweepstakes, behind Chanute and Piper.


KSPA enlists the help of journalism teachers, professional journalists, university faculty members and other journalism experts to judge the entries.



About KSPA: The Kansas Scholastic Press Association is a non-profit association of more than 100 high school and middle school journalism programs. Its mission is to promote excellence in high school journalism publications and education. Please log on to learn more at www.kspaonline.org.


KSPA Contact:

Eric Thomas, executive director, (785) 864-0605, [email protected]