Contest Information

  • The CHESPRA Communications Contest recognizes outstanding communications produced by public school districts and private schools located in the District of Columbia, Maryland, Virginia and West Virginia. Entries must have been produced during the PREVIOUS school year. Winners are announced during the Fall CHESPRA Conference and posted on the CHESPRA website. An updated contest entry link will be posted by Mon, October 3.

    Each entry costs $20 for members and $30 for non-members. Please note that there will be an award of merit, award of excellence and honorable mention in each category.

    Contact Monica Hatchett at with questions about the contest. The submission deadline is 5 p.m. on Mon, Oct. 10, 2022.

    Contest Rules and Eligibility

    To recognize outstanding communications produced by school divisions and local schools in the District of Columbia, Maryland, Virginia, and West Virginia and to encourage Chesapeake Chapter members to evaluate and enhance their communications. 

    Any public or private school divisions (K-12), including special schools such as vocational-technical centers, located in the District of Columbia, Maryland, Virginia, and West Virginia.

    Judging and Recognition

    • The top award in each category is the Award of Excellence, followed by the Award of Merit and Honorable Mention.

    • Entries will not be judged against each other, and awards will be given in any category only if merited.

    • Entries will be judged against criteria for content and design. Districts and divisions of all sizes are encouraged to submit entries.

    • Judging will be conducted by media and public relations professionals who work for entities not eligible to enter the contest.

    • Winners will be notified and awards will be distributed at the Fall CHESPRA Conference. 

    Entries not meeting these requirements will not be considered for the contest.

    • Entries must be produced during the PRIOR school year, 2021-2022 (July 1, 2021 through June 30, 2022).

    • All entries, both print and electronic, must be submitted in some digital form, either via URL or file upload.

    • The same publication may not be entered in more than one category. Choose the primary distribution method when deciding on submission category.

    • Multiple issues of the same publication count as one entry.

    • Student-written and/or student-produced publications are not eligible for this contest.

    • Entries must be received 5 pm on Friday, September 30, 2022.


    Contest Categories

    Print Category: Community Newsletter, Brochure, Employee Newsletter, Parent Information, School Newsletter, Speech/OpEd, Calendar, Financial Information, Handbook, Special Publication

    Electronic Category: Website Home Page, Blog, Web Publication, Video Production or Program (TV & streaming), Website Subsection, E-Newsletter, Social Media

    Campaign: Special Events, Crisis Communication, Special Campaign


    Community Newsletter, Employee Newsletter or School Newsletter
    Any regular periodical that is distributed at least twice a year. Submit two different issues.

    Any publication designed to inform the public about the school district or division, its schools, or its programs.

    Any speech that was written to address an internal or external audience or any statement or article that appeared in print or online for the sole purpose of expressing an opinion on a school-related subject.

    The calendar is a separate category even if it is used as a division handbook.

    Financial Information
    A printed piece that addresses school finances, budgets, employee fringe benefits, or other types of school financial issues. Published materials may be directed at internal and/or external audiences. Do not send official school budgets.

    A printed piece in booklet form for specific audiences, such as a handbook for bus drivers, parent handbook, a volunteer handbook, etc.

    Special Publication
    This category includes annual reports and any piece printed for a specific occasion or purpose – that is not included in another category.


    Website Home Page
    Any school system public website. Provide the URL.

    Website Subsection
    This category includes any of the subsections of a website. Send the URL to the entry page for the subsection being nominated.

    A blog generated by the school division for the specific purpose of soliciting opinions of an internal or external audience.

    Social Media
    Communication efforts or campaigns using Facebook, Twitter or other social media outlets. Include an explanation of how and why the social media is being used and the outcomes achieved. Provide URLs to relevant accounts and individual posts, if appropriate.

    Web Publication or E-Newsletter
    This category includes any communication that is regularly published and distributed via the web or by email. Send the URL of two separate editions.

    Video Production or Program (TV & streaming)
    Each entry is limited to one program or series. Video entries must be 10 minutes or less. If your production is longer, please submit a 10-minute sample video.


    Special Event
    This category is for an event supporting a school initiative. It can be a one-time event or annual event. Please submit any material that provides purpose and overview of the event.

    Crisis Communications
    This category is to share the response of a crisis that occurred in your school district. Please clearly state the crisis that occurred and include all supporting documents that demonstrate the response.

    Special Campaign
    Submit any material that was used to create an awareness, inform, or educate an internal or external audience about a specific topic or initiative that occurred in your school division.

    CHESPRA Communications Contest - Member Entry 2022

    Entries must have been produced during the 2021-2022 school year, between July 1, 2021 and June 30, 2022. Entries can include print, Web, or items such as special events or campaigns.

    Each entry for CHESPRA members is $20.

    Winners will be announced at CHESPRA's fall conference.

    CHESPRA Communications Contest - Non-Member Entry 2022

    Entries must have been produced during the 2021-2022 school year, July 1, 2021 to June 30, 2022. Entries can include print, Web, multi-media, or items such as special events or campaigns.

    Each entry for non-CHESPRA members is $30.

    Contact Monica Hatchett at with questions about the contest. Deadline for submissions is 5 p.m. on Monday, October 10, 2022.
Last Modified on October 3, 2022