Who may enter

Students must be in 6th through 9th grades and be enrolled at a Kansas middle school, junior high, or K-8 building. Advisers of entering students must be members of the Kansas Scholastic Press Association. (Membership is free! Just sign up here.)

Each school may have up to 10 entries divided among the 4 contests as they see fit. Cost to enter ALL contests is $15 per school, payable by check to the Kansas Scholastic Press Association. Entries must be postmarked by April 13, 2019.

All entries and awards will be judged and placed in mail by May 7 and in your hands by or before May 15. (If you need them sooner, let us know.) The $15 pays for return postage, certificates, and up to two medals for each Superior entry.

Mail entries to

Laura Hayden

KSPA Middle School Co-Contest CoordinatorDerby North Middle School3100 N Rock RoadDerby, Kansas 67037


Entries may be submitted in the following categories:


PHOTOGRAPHY with Caption

Entries may be either black and white or color. Students who enter this category should submit photos that have appeared in either the newspaper or yearbook within the last year. Photos may be either digitally or traditional film produced. Photos should be 8×10 size and printing on glossy photograph paper is encouraged. On the back of the photo attach the entry form and a caption. The picture need not be cropped for competition in the same manner as it appeared in the publication.

Judges will look for imaginative subject matter, technical quality, composition, visual impact, story told by photograph, simplicity, cropping, and lighting. Photo does not have to be mounted.


The feature should be written in ink or on computer and be an approximate maximum of 350 words. It should be one that is appearing in a current yearbook, literary magazine, or newspaper or published within the last year. Feature entries may be submitted as PDF files to lhayden@usd260.com.

Judges will look for attention-grabbing leads, feature style as opposed to news style, colorful details, use of direct quotes and anecdotes, reader appeal, accuracy, and completeness.


Entries must be student-designed and can be for yearbook, newspaper, or literary magazine. The layout should be one that is in the current year’s publication. Entries may be mailed or emailed as PDF files (preferred) to lhayden@usd260.com. Judging will be for the layout only.

Judges will look for clean layout, effective positioning of elements, evidence of consideration for readers, creative graphic approaches, and a sense of personality or style.


Broadcast may be video or audio on any topic and should be on a CD or DVD. Include a note indicating the section to be judged if there is more than one. Segments judged should not exceed 3 minutes. Names of students need to be written on the CD and DVDs that will not be mailed back.

Judges will look for audio and visual clarity, use of colorful, clear details, reader appeal, accuracy, and completeness.



1. Complete an entry form for each entry you send. (Copy it as many times as you wish up to 10 entries.) It is acceptable to have a team of students create a story, layout, or broadcast although no more than 2 Superior medals will be given for each team if the team is ranked Superior. Names must be as they would like the certificate.

2. Attach this form securely to back of entry or send as a PDF with those submitted electronically.

3. Mail entries and $15 (check made out to KSPA) to Laura Hayden, Contest Coordinator, KSPA Middle School Mail-In, 3100 N Rock Road, Derby, Kansas 67037. (Entries may be brought to the Middle Level KSPA Workshop to save postage.)

4. Entries MUST BE postmarked April 15 if you plan to get them back before school is out.

5. You will receive back the following: all entries with positive, instructive, helpful critiques, certificates for those judged Honorable Mention, Excellent, Superior, and medals for those judged Superior.

6. If you have any questions, please contact Laura Hayden at lhayden@usd260.com