Telling stories through videos with new project


Photo by Dave Jennings

English teachers Dave Jennings (bottom right) and Brian Turnbaugh (middle right) prepare to interview Principal Will Dwyer for their video Cat Chat.

By Leslie Najera-Rivas, Editor in Chief

Sending support to students during remote learning, English teachers Brian Turnbaugh and Dave Jennings released the narrative project. 

“Essentially, Turnbaugh and I are creating video content for the district that showcases all of the awesome things that happen in West Chicago on a daily basis,” Jennings said. 

Based on experience, Jennings and Turnbaugh hope to tell West Chicago’s story through videos.

“When you don’t tell your own story, other people will tell it for you sometimes fairly and accurately, and other times, not so much,” Jennings said.  “We want to give people a chance to see firsthand all that happens here, so they have a better, more informed sense of all that makes WeGo such a truly special place.”

The teachers began preparing the pride point videos during the summer.

“We have asked members of our staff to convey important messages to our student body during this difficult season. Usually, they end with some sort of actionable takeaway, and we encourage students to make that a pride point,” Jennings said. 

The pair have released videos like Cat Chat with Principal Will Dwyer, new teachers in the school, and how to take the SAT safely. 

“Each of these has featured a particular teacher offering a piece of advice to our students about how to navigate the challenges of this unique season of life,” Jennings said. “We both believe that one of the most important ingredients in the secret sauce of WCCHS is our staff, so it has been a ton of fun to showcase some people and give them an amplified platform to keep doing what they always do – support our students.”

Jennings and Turnbaugh hope to broadcast West Chicago’s colors. 

“We were a great school long before we won a state soccer championship and we will continue to be a great school long into the future,” Jennings said, referring to the 2019 championship. 

Videos can be watched through Instagram, Twitter, and Youtube as Wcchsd94TV or on the D94 Facebook page. 

“We’re trying to get Pride Point videos out every two weeks, as we’re able. From there, it’s whatever else the district is asking us to produce that they deem would be most helpful to our constituents,” Jennings said.