Ritenour High School Teacher Named Missouri Journalism Teacher of the Year
Jane Bannester, Ritenour High School broadcast journalism teacher, is known to be her media students’ greatest mentor and cheerleader, especially when they tackle tough stories and receive state and national accolades. Now her students are returning the favor as they celebrate Bannester as Missouri Journalism Teacher of the Year.
The Missouri Interscholastic Press Association selected Bannester as this year’s top high school journalism teacher and will honor her on Journalism Day on March 29 at University of Missouri-Columbia. During her 20-year tenure at RHS, Bannester has been instrumental in transforming radio and television courses that incorporate 21st century innovative journalism skills and technology in the school’s $1.25 million Media Convergence Center.
As the media hub of the RHS, the Media Convergence Center houses KRHS-90.1 FM Radio, KRHS TV and a large media convergence classroom for students to collaborate and produce online content for Ritenourlive.org. Her students have earned scores of journalism awards from MIPA and the national Intercollegiate Broadcast System for their outstanding work.
“Ms. Bannester works hard to create opportunities for students in her program,” said RHS Principal Shane Hopper. “This is a most-deserved honor.”
As part of Bannester’s nomination, RHS junior Izzy Clark wrote that Bannester has ignited passion in pursuing a career as a broadcast journalist.
Clark said in her nomination, “Ms. Bannester has a high standard for our productions. She is not afraid to tell me what I need to do to improve, and at the same time, I feel like it matters. I have never had a teacher push me to perform so well, and also be so inspired.”
Bannester’s impact as an outstanding journalism teacher and passion for her profession extend beyond her high school students. She has shared her expertise as a presenter at Journalism Education Association (JEA) conventions, JEA Adviser Institute, Missouri Education Technology Community conferences and the Missouri Google Summit.