With school experiences and stories unfolding and yearbook design in full-swing, the Clinton Torch yearbook staff will take time this week to celebrate the yearbook tradition during National Yearbook Week. Through yearbook-related activities, schools throughout the country will observe National Yearbook Week, Oct. 6-12, as a way to celebrate excellence in scholastic journalism and acknowledge the important role that yearbook staffs play in telling the school story through the yearbook.

According to Rebekkah Smith, yearbook adviser at Clinton High School, the first National Yearbook Week was held in October 1987, by proclamation of President Ronald Reagan. It coincided with the Bicentennial celebration of the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights, guaranteeing freedom of the press. The proclamation declares: "The students who compile yearbooks likewise treasure all that the experience can teach them about teamwork and about writing, the graphic arts, and business skills. The practical cooperation and specialization that students learn in yearbook production stand them in good stead when they enter college or pursue other opportunities."

"Yearbooks allow all students at Clinton to see themselves and their friends in print as a part of the school story and are valuable keepsakes that everyone in the community can hold onto forever," said Smith. "Creating a yearbook is a great way for students to learn important 21st century skills. The real-life experience gleaned in yearbook can lead to personal and professional success, no matter what career choice they pursue."

The yearbook staff for the 2013-2014 edition of the Torch will be led by Smith. Staff members include Dakota Dedon, Erin Ward, Cameron Beem, Hope Huggins, Halee Hillyer, Brandon Cates, Katie Willingham, and Jordan Bates.

Copies of the 2014 Torch can be ordered by e-mailing yearbook@clinton.k12.ar.us or through jostensyearbooks.com.