Archive of Issues
Archive of Narrations
Syndic Literary Journal

Letter From The Publisher ~ LeRoy Chatfield

I received this text from an accomplished

and highly regarded  high school English teacher:

“I am in mourning. It is hard to think of starting this school year with 160 new students and being required to teach with distance learning only. As you know, a lot happens in the classroom that just cannot be replicated in a virtual environment.”

Yes, I do know!

Once upon a time, I too, was a high school English teacher – nine years in fact! – and loved every minute in the classroom.

Sixty-two years ago, I was a high school English teacher at Sacred Heart High School located at Franklin & Ellis Street in San Francisco, California. I was  young and inexperienced ~ only one year of teaching to my credit –  but for some idealistic reason, I felt the need to create a bona fide literary magazine so that my students would have the opportunity to publish their writing ~ essays, stories, poetry, etc. I was convinced that giving teenage students the opportunity to  publish their work would encourage, motivate,  empower, and yes, even reward them for “writing”.  I called the magazine: syndic.

I published five issues – 2 in 1958, 2 in 1959 and 1 in 1960.  Each issue was 16 pages in length and professionally printed.  syndic was distributed  to my students, their parents and to other English classes at the high school.

I do not ~ and dare not ~ overstate the impact on my students by providing them with an opportunity to publish their work, but I am not going to understate it either! 

Such a magazine needed to have artwork on the covers and   graphic designs inside. Yes, of course it did, and was all created by my students who possessed  artistic ability. Who knew?  A literary magazine needs reviews of books, movies and local museums ~ again, all researched and written by my students.  This simple student publication needed poetry, stories, essays, commentary, editorials – again, all written by my English class students.

Fast forward more than 50-years.

Occasionally,  and oftentimes, quite unexpectedly, I have crossed paths with some of these syndic high school authors /artists from the late 1950s. Would you be surprised to hear they shared with  me their fond memories of being a published author in syndic? . . . I didn’t think so!

Once an English teacher, always an English teacher!  How can I best respond to the “English teacher in mourning” who texted me?

I will create a second Syndic Literary Journal, which will be  dedicated to publishing the literary work of teenage high school students.  With the help of my Syndic subscribers, I will solicit teenage submissions of: poetry; stories; commentary; artwork;  photographs; narrations; music presentations; videos; dance; cartoons; one-act plays; and anything else created by high school students I have failed to mention.

The name of my new literary journal will be:  Syndic Literary Journal – High School Edition

I hear your question: how is this High School Edition going to help your “mourning English teacher?”

 I don’t know. That will be up to her and every other mourning high school English teacher who is  distance teaching during this Pandemic. However, I know from personal experience  the  dramatic effect it will have for  students whose work is published in the High School Edition.

Just let me add: this new high school edition  venture is simply a drop of water in an ocean of need, but now well into old age, this is one skill I am still able to contribute. Starting a brand new project from  scratch is always a challenge ~ what if it fails?  what if no one cares?  what if . . .?

Stay tuned.













Compiled/Published by LeRoy Chatfield
History of Syndic
Write Letter / Contact Publisher
© all photos/text

Archive of Issues

Archive of Narrations