Shine news

Submission tips, don’t miss out 🙌

Hello everyone

So, it’s almost the end of the Spring term and we know that the Easter holiday can’t come a moment too soon for teachers and students alike. But before you finish, it’s almost time to submit your school magazine (print or e-edition), newspaper, podcast or multimedia project for the Shine School Media Awards 2024. We’re ready for you – and with a clutch of entries already submitted, we can’t wait to see what everyone else has to send in for this year’s competition.

The final deadline is the beginning of May, so there’s a little time left, but the end of term is a great ‘end point’ for schools who have wrapped their project to submit entries.

So: it’s time… get your entry form together and press SEND…


As you fill out the entry form it might be interesting to know a little about our judging process here at the Shine School Media Awards – and who looks at the entries and what sort of criteria they apply. I also have a couple of massive pieces of advice that could well improve the chances of your entry.

First up, at our main judging day we invite luminaries from across the professional media landscape, people I get incredibly excited about meeting, to review categories relevant to their field of expertise. So, how should you tailor your entry to maximise your chances?

  • Piece of advice number 1
    Take a second look at our entry form and double check if there are categories that perhaps you hadn’t thought were relevant to your entry – but actually might be. Overlooked categories such as Best Marketing Strategy, Best Sustainability Initiative or our new Scoop of the Year award.
    Putting together a thoughtful, convincing case for any of these will significantly improve your chances of winning across the board. Every year we see worthwhile entries that simply leave half the categories on the entry form blank. Remind your students about this!
  • Piece of advice number 2
    Choose which are the best pieces to enter in ‘specific’ categories like ‘writer of the year’ or illustration very carefully. We know this is contentious – tortuous, even. But, the thing is for students to be entirely dispassionate and simply focus on the best work for each category. Don’t forget the underdog, the surprise or the leftfield entry: we’re thinking particularly in the category of best photograph for instance. Simplicity and boldness of vision and message can sometimes impress far more than one where everything is crammed in.
  • Piece of advice number 3
    Don’t forget sport! This year it’s our designated topic and open to all media from reporting, opinion, fiction, photography or cartoon… and beyond. The only limit is your imagination. We know this choice was a bit of a wild card as we often choose buzz-topics. However we very much hope that students enjoy its simplicity. There is often great sport writing and imagery in student work each year. We hope that means there’s masses to choose from in your entry.

As you complete your entries if you have or need help around the Shine School Media Awards 2024, just drop us a line at

Til next time,

Chair of Shine