August 7, 2014Michelle Theriault Boots of the Anchorage Daily News for EWA
Education reporters are constantly negotiating access — to schools, students and data. In their session at EWA’s National Seminar, Betsy Hammond of the (Portland, Ore.) Oregonian and Daniel Connolly of the (Memphis, Tenn.) Commercial Appeal discussed two approaches for getting past gatekeepers and to stories worth telling.
Hammond, who described herself as a “data nerd” to the EWA audience at Vanderbilt University in May, focused on data available through public records law.
In Texas, a state known for its zero-tolerance approach to school discipline, 80 percent of its prisoners are high school dropouts. And as more research finds a link between suspensions and quitting school early, the evidence is mounting that keeping kids from learning for behavioral reasons hurts their academic outcomes. Against this backdrop is White Middle School in central Texas.
This fall, the share of K-12 students in the United States who are Latino is projected to climb to nearly one quarter, a figure expected to rise to nearly 30 percent by 2022. And proportionately more Hispanic students are enrolling in postsecondary education than white, non-Hispanic students.