Winners of the 2023 Editor’s Choice Design Contest


For three years now, the Treering Design Contest is a spring tradition: advisers and student editors across the US and Canada enter their favorite spreads of the year. This time, we took the vote to the people: after selecting ten finalists from over 300 entries, the world shared the love and likes via the official Treering Facebook and Instagram pages. All ten finalists earned three free yearbooks and $50 from Amazon. The grand prize winner earned 10 free yearbooks and a $500 Amazon gift card.

“It is amazing to see the passion our editors have and inspiring to know we provide a platform for them to capture and share their memories.”

Bobby Hernandez, Treering Head of Growth

On behalf of the judges—a team of editors, publishing professionals, graphic designers, and moms—who appreciate every person who submitted their stories and spreads, thank you for providing inspiration.

Club divider spread by PACHEK

Grand Prize Winner: PACHEK, Hopkinsville, KY

Celebrating the 30th anniversary of their western Kentucky homeschool support group’ officially forming.’s formation, PACHEK used “photos from previous years related to [each section], along with a paragraph with a little bit of group history,” parent and yearbook volunteer Lora Farrell said.

Why It’s a Winner

Using Treering’s “Groovy” theme, PACHEK captured the past and present. There is an obvious hierarchy with the headlines and graphics. We loved that every photo includes an identifying caption. One judge said, “This spread shows how easy it is to use Treering graphics and layouts. You can still edit them to make them personable to your audience.”

Collage-themed yearbook spread focused on women's athletics.
Cheer spread by Harlingen High School

Because songs are a tool and reflect moments in time, the team at Harlingen High School used song titles to shape and guide headlines and subheadlines. “They want the students to flip through the yearbook and be able to read but at the same time experience songs that will remind them of the good moments today which become the memories of our past that we will share in the future,” adviser Zeila Rodriguez said.

Why It’s a Winner

Beyond the music (see what we did there?), visually this spread oozes memories. It is laid out much like someone would save clipping and highlights on a corkboard. “[The hierarchy] draws the reader in,” a judge said, “There is the main photo and you are able to easily follow the flow of the spread.” Every photo tells a story and has an expanded caption to teach us what we didn’t see. Another judge said, “You can almost feel the music as you read through the stories on this spread.”

Game-themed yearbook spread with wide coverage of homecoming events.
Homecoming jamboree spread by Evergreen Valley High School

When you hear all that Evergreen Valley High School does for its fall homecoming jamboree, it could be overwhelming. “During this season, student leaders create and host a large night rally show with numerous club and class performances, spirit days, dances, and athletic activities,” student editor Jackon Tong said. They use multiple spreads to cover the week inspired by classic board games.

Why It’s a Winner

Tong said, “Many students from all social backgrounds come together to celebrate our school spirit,” and we loved that this spread highlights the diverse activities and groups involved with homecoming. The 24 photos are organized and we applaud the use of color to group elements visually. One of the judges said, “They did a fantastic job representing the lower classman at their school.”

Day in the life yearbook spread and design contest finalist
One Day in the Life spread by River City Believers Academy

Authenticity is the goal of the team at River City Believers Academy. Throughout the book, they wanted to showcase how they “do ‘real life’” on campus and off. As a K-12 private, church school, they actively seek new enrollments and use the yearbook to help. “When people stop by the office they always like to look through our books, as they are a great indicator of the culture, love, and commitment we have for our school,” adviser Carmen Garcia said.

Why It’s a Winner

This is a well-executed idea to cover four more students in the book. We loved the combination of user-submitted snapshots up top with professional portraits. It shows how everyone has a story to tell. This spread could be replicated as a module on a portrait page or expanded to be a theme covering athletes, artists, administration, and academics.

Design contest finalist and field hockey yearbook spread with excellent use of color and photos as a background.
Sports spread by East Stroudsburg High School North

Despite being what adviser Keisha Agard-Thomassine calls a “quirky bunch of souls who meet atop one of the beautiful Pocono Mountains in northeast Pennsylvania,” the Timberwolf spirit is evident across each spread in the East Stroudsburg High School North yearbook. “We are brimming with talent and pride and our Carolina blue flickers through our halls, walls, sneakers, and Crocs,” Agard-Thomassine said.

Why It’s a Winner

From the color grading of the photos to the field hockey stick and ball frames in which the collages sit, this is exquisite. The judges also called out the lowered visibility of the background image as a tool to make the photos pop. The photos demonstrate intensity and action and the large cut-out looks to the right-facing page, directing the eye flow.

Senior class divider spread, and design contest finalist, with large dominant image and body copy
Senior section divider spread by Stuart Country Day School

“Shoes tell a story,” student editor Lucy Simon said. She and her co-editor have attended K-12 Stuart Country Day School for most of their lives. “A person’s shoes are a unique expression of their journey and personality.” The shoe motif and vibrant colors express the energy and excitement of the journey.

Why It’s a Winner

When this spread came up in judging it was a hold-your-breath moment. The general intake of air preceded an enthusiastic discussion of the balance of the design and boldness of color. “I love the shoe graphic added on this page,” said one judge after reading their story.

Another finalist and homecoming spread filled with vibrant color and dynamic photos
Homecoming spread by Argo Community High School

The sub-headline says, “Making it Memorable” and the team at Argo did just that. Traditionally, they’ve used a school color palette. “While we do have elements of the traditional maroon, we choose a wider palette to make this year different,” adviser Lisa Garrett said. This diversion further strengthens their 2022-2023 yearbook theme, “Make Your Moment.” Garrett said, “When you chose to collaborate, excel, succeed, and participate you are making memorable moments.”

Why It’s a Winner

Homecoming is one of those events that is larger than life on a high school campus. This spread captured what a treat it was for their school to have a week where their spirit went beyond the school walls (and pages). “This spread encompasses the meaning of school spirit and having community support,” a judge said. Another said, she “loved use of the gumball machine.”

Design contest finalist and 75th anniversary book celebrates the moments and traditions that make high school great.
Mr. and Miss Wayne spread from Wayne High School

At the end of their junior year, Wayne students select two of their own to be community ambassadors for the school. Using a movie theme for the school’s 75th anniversary of yearbook creation, each spread has cinematic flair. “One of our editors created this spread, and we love the little touches like the red [ampersand] throughout,” adviser Beth Stacy said. “His inspiration was the movie ‘Mr. and Mrs. Smith.’”

Why It’s a Winner

We agree with Stacy: the pop of color is a small detail with a large impact on the design. This spread has balance in terms of copy, photos, and graphic elements. “The story behind this spread is fantastic. They did a great job using Treering’s design features to tell the story with these photos,” the judges said.

Awards-themed superlatives spread with cutouts and gold-themed graphics
Eighth grade superlatives spread from Solvang School

Because the yearbook team used Treering’s “Watching” theme, they “created a red carpet-style spread for our 8th-grade superlatives,” adviser Alyssa Spanier said.

Why It’s a Winner

The designers on the judging panel deemed the maximalism of this spread to be a show-stopper. It captured both the school spirit with the tiled mascot as well as the theme. What an energetic send-off for these students to high school.

“You have to enjoy the school spirit shown here,” one judge said.

Classical Conversations Faces of History yearbook spread and design contest finalist with cut outs and information on the project
Faces of History spread by Classical Conversations – South Bend Campus

Finalist: Classical Conversations – South Bend Campus, South Bend, IN

“This design was inspired by one of my favorite design styles: Mid-Century Modern/Bauhaus,” parent editor Carolyn Baltazar said. “I love how impactful and bold it is while still remaining very true to its extremely simple elements.”

Why It’s a Winner

Since over 1200 Classical Conversations communities publish yearbooks with Treering annually, this is one spread that can easily be replicated in each book.

Runners Up

If the top 10 weren’t enough yearbook inspiration, check out this gallery of runners-up from Academy of Innovation, Central Middle School, Northern High School, Northampton High School, McKinley Steam Academy, Rawlins High School, and Wheeler Elementary School.

Honorable Mentions

Actis Jr. High

Baumholder Middle High School

Berean Academy

Cal Aero Elementary Yearbook

Camp Wekeela

Changemaker High School

Chapel Hill Christian Academy

Classical Conversations – Central Lakeland, FL

Classical Conversations – Dallas, TX

Classical Conversations – Greensboro, NC

Community Baptist Christian School

Council Jr./Sr. High School

Creative Learning Christian School

Dalhart High School

Deep Waters Academy

Doherty Memorial High School

Dumas High School

Eagle Ridge School District #36

Early College Academy High School

Founders Classical Academy of Flower Mound

Fox Meadow

Franklin Elementary

Freedom High School

Fulton Science Academy

George F. Baker High School

Glennallen High School

Grandview Hills Elementary

Haines Borough School District

Harrison Lane Elementary

Henderson International School

Hermosa Middle School

Hazel Point Intermediate

Heron Heights Elementary School

Lakeside Christian School

The Learning Connection Co-op

Lennox Middle School

Lois Lenski Elementary

Magnolia Science Academy Santa Ana

Mark Twain Elementary School

Mary Blount Elementary

MaST II Community Charter (Tacony Campus)

Mt. Eden High School

North Elementary School

Niles McKinley High School

Oakville MS/HS

Ocean Shore School

Orangeburg Christian Academy

Pelham High School

Phoebe School of Presidency

Piper School

Prairie Lea School

Queen’s Grant High School

Radcliff Elementary

La Reina High School

Rita Ledesma Elementary School

Roaring Brook School

Sacred Heart Catholic School

Seabrook Elementary School

SEED School of Miami

Springton Manor Elementary School

Sycamore Creek Elementary

Tech High School

West Valley High School

WR Odell Elementary


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