Despite high production costs, teacher keeps student price to $65
By Thanh Nguyen & Rachelle Esmele
The OHS yearbook class officially released this year’s yearbooks on May 30.
Those who purchased books during presale or who wish to buy them now for $65 may go to yearbook teacher Ted Harris’s classroom, Patterson 106. Harris is also selling yearbook covers and extra sets of six autograph pages for $3 each.
“Yearbook (class) did a pretty good job!” said senior Deborah Ramos, who was given a yearbook by a friend.
Purchasers were originally asked to retrieve yearbooks from the student bank, but the yearbook class no longer has access to it, according to Harris.
In order to sell more yearbooks, the yearbooks will remain at the price of $65, despite the price being lower than the actual yearbook cost, according to Harris. He did not want to disclose the actual cost of buying yearbooks from Jostens, the yearbook company supplier. Purchasing more yearbooks from Jostens lowers the base price, so selling fewer yearbooks would force Harris to sell them at a more expensive cost. Therefore, he has decided to keep the prices at $65.
This year’s yearbooks had a few issues that dismayed some students. The yearbook did not include this year’s senior prom: The Sweet Escape due to the 7-8 week turnaround time required by Jostens. If prom had been included in the yearbook, it wouldn’t have been available to students until July, which is a month after school ends. Students appreciated the yearbook class for their hard work, despite having concerns about the book’s cover and some typographical errors.
“Oh heck no!” said senior Dan Nguyen, who was identified as ‘Daniel’ in the yearbook. “(The yearbook class) did not just spell my name wrong in the yearbook!”
Harris suggested that errors are just an unfortunate reality of publishing. “Unfortunately, they happen,” said Harris. “We just need to do a better job of double-checking and editing.”
Some students were disappointed with the yearbook’s front cover, which featured the OHS wildcat mascot standing in front of a blank wall.
“I don’t like the front cover,” said senior Kerri Chao. “I feel like the front cover should have a memorable feel to it. A picture of the wildcat just doesn’t cut it.”
“I wish we we had more of an influence on the cover design,” said Ramos, who was also disappointed with the cover.”
Harris said that this was his most challenging year as an adviser, because the yearbook class never had any computers that worked. He was required to pay for equipment such as cameras out of his own pocket. According to Harris, many leadership students were in yearbook class years before, but the two classes are during the same period this year; resulting in further yearbook challenges.
Next year, Jostens is trying a new program to work with schools with large populations such as Oakland High to have twice the pages at cheaper cost, according to Harris. For that reason, he expects to be very busy with making next year’s yearbook due to doubling the coverage.
“I see a bright future for yearbooks,” said Harris. ”Everybody is gonna like it because it’s going to be twice the size at less cost.”
Harris thanked one of his students for their outstanding work.
“Finally, and most importantly,” said Harris, “everything that is good about the yearbook is because of Melissa Quon, the editor in chief!”
Yearbooks are now on sale in Ted Harris’s classroom, Patterson (former Shop Building) room 106. A yearbook is $65; yearbook covers and extra sets of six autograph pages are $3 each.