Monticello HS Newscast Showcases Principal in New Segment
Working on a TV show is very special to a group of Albemarle County students, and there's a new segment on their show that's getting a lot of attention.
Monticello Today is a student newscast that airs on weekday mornings at Monticello High School. The show has a new Friday segment - Turner Time - where the principal gets a chance to speak directly to the student body - about anything and everything.
"People on Mondays are like, what are you going to do this Friday for Turner Time? People get so hyped up about it," said Lauren Drake, co-anchor on Monticello Today.
The segment gives Principal Dr. Jesse Turner a chance to sound off to students.
"He talks... [about] anything... he cooks, he teaches us to tie bow ties," said Michael Comer, who co-anchors Monticello Today.
Dr. Turner started this school year as Monticello High School's new principal. One day he got on the school's morning broadcast to talk to students and it's snowballed.
"My conversations with them purely about uplift. I'm trying to give them examples of how to be successful," Turner said.
A crowd of several dozen students and teachers now gathers outside the Monticello TV studio each Friday to watch the show.
"They absolutely want to have a relationship with me and, this way, I get to touch the entire student body," Turner said.
Students agree. They've even made signs saying "We love Dr. Turner."
"The more we watched it, we realized how funny it was and how well received it was by the students," Comer said.
School administrators say the broadcast program is the only one like it in the region, and for Dr. Turner, it gives him a unique chance to reach out to members of his school.
"I'm not really a paperwork guy and I have to force myself to do that and I love being with the children every minute of the day. I tell them that I love them and they know it," Turner said. "I don't care how tough they are, when I say that I love them all the children really know that I absolutely love them and adore them so it makes what I do easy."
Monticello Today airs every weekday morning throughout the school, starting at 9:30 a.m.