2015 Awards

Overview

National Awards for Education Reporting

The Education Writers Association’s National Awards for Education Reporting advance education journalism by recognizing the field’s very best efforts. The award goals are to

  • Encourage and inspire more and better education journalism, and
  • Underscore the importance of excellent coverage and storytelling as a cornerstone of democracy and education.

The Education Writers Association’s National Awards for Education Reporting advance education journalism by recognizing the field’s very best efforts. The award goals are to

  • Encourage and inspire more and better education journalism, and
  • Underscore the importance of excellent coverage and storytelling as a cornerstone of democracy and education.

All media may participate in the awards. So whether your work appeared in print or online, on TV or the radio, or all of the above, we’re eager to recognize excellence on the education beat.

EWA is delighted to announce a sizable increase in the cash prizes for this year’s award recipients. Category winners will receive $1,000, while the Fred M. Hechinger Grand Prize for Distinguished Education Reporting comes with $10,000. EWA is also announcing two new awards: The Ronald Moskowitz Prize for Outstanding Beat Reporting, which comes with a cash prize of $2,500; and the Edwin Gould Foundation’s Eddie Prize, the winner of which will receive a $7,500 prize.

Finalists for the categories will be announced in late March. Winners chosen from among those finalists will be announced and honored at EWA’s 69th National Seminar in Boston, May 1-3, 2016.

The deadline for submitting entries is December 15, 2015. Works from the 2014-15 school year are eligible, though a majority of the items submitted must first have appeared in 2015.

EWA — the national professional organization for members of the news media who cover education — is now in its seventh decade of honoring distinguished journalism, furthering the association’s mission of increasing the quantity and quality of education coverage to create a better-informed public.

Entries will be judged on criteria that include the quality of writing, clarity, insight, innovative presentation, deadline pressures, and explanation of issues. Please note that the categories have changed and that applicants should review them all before entering their submissions. Each category may include a winner and up to two finalists. 

Some categories are organized by the size of the newsroom(s) that produced the entry. See award rules for determining staff size. If a collaboration brought together newsrooms of different sizes, please submit the entry or entries into the category for which the larger or largest newsroom is eligible; for collaborations between print and broadcast, see award rules. Please coordinate with any partner organizations to ensure the same material is not submitted by more than one partnering outlet.

The EWA 2015 awards program recognizes the work of journalists for independent news outlets. Ineligible work includes content published by employees of professional organizations, educational institutions, think tanks, alumni periodicals, advocates, or groups focused on research, advocacy or lobbying.

Before you apply, review the entry categories and award rules. If you have questions, review the award FAQs or contact EWA.

No Longer Accepting Entries

Announcement

EWA Announces Winners of Top Education Reporting Prizes

Cara Fitzpatrick and Lisa Gartner, education reporters for the Tampa Bay Times, with Caroline Hendrie, executive director for EWA (Photo credit: Lili Boxer for EWA)

The Education Writers Association is pleased to announce that “Failure Factories,” an investigative series from the Tampa Bay Times, has won the top prize in the National Awards for Education Reporting. This year’s Fred M. Hechinger Grand Prize for Distinguished Education Reporting will go to three writers of the series – Cara Fitzpatrick, Lisa Gartner and Michael LaForgia.

Announcement

Finalists for 2015 EWA Awards for Education Reporting and Eddie Prize Announced
Category Winners Announced at EWA National Seminar

March 31, 2016 (WASHINGTON, DC)—The Education Writers Association is pleased to announce the finalists for the 2015 National Awards for Education Reporting and the Eddie Prize, recognizing the top education stories in print, broadcast, and online media across the country.

Thirty-eight entries earned the status of finalist from EWA’s panel of judges, who found much to praise in the work from a diverse pool of outlets that included lean three-person teams, enterprising nonprofits, and venerable news organizations.

EWA Radio

Bright Lights, Big City: Covering NYC’s Schools
EWA Radio: Episode 89

(Unsplash/Pedro Lastra)

Today’s assignment: Reporting on the nation’s largest school district, with 1.1 million students and an operating budget of $25 billion. Patrick Wall of Chalkbeat New York has dug deep into the city’s special education programs, investigated whether school choice programs are contributing to student segregation rather than reducing it, and penned a three-part series on on one high school’s effort to reinvent itself. He talks with EWA public editor Emily Richmond about his work, and offers tips for making the most of student interviews, getting access to campuses, and balancing bigger investigations with daily coverage. A first-prize winner for beat reporting in this year’s EWA Awards, Wall is spending the current academic year at Columbia University’s School of Journalism as a Spencer Fellow.

EWA Radio

Doing the “Higher Ed Hustle”
EWA Radio: Episode 87

Flickr/Hitchster

Michael Vasquez shares the backstory to his “Eddie” prize-winning series for The Miami Herald on for-profit colleges in the Sunshine State. Now education editor at Politico, Vasquez and EWA public editor Emily Richmond also discuss whether the federal government’s efforts to regulate for-profit colleges go far enough, as well as some story ideas for reporters tackling the higher education beat in the coming academic year.

EWA Radio

How Texas Shortchanged Students With Disabilities
EWA Radio: Episode 90

new investigation by the Houston Chronicle finds that the Lone Star State took unusual steps to severely cut its special education programs — keeping hundreds of thousands of potentially qualified students from receiving services.

Chronicle reporter Brian Rosenthal talks with EWA public editor Emily Richmond about crunching the numbers, how this has impacted students and families, and what’s next in his reporting. 

EWA Radio

‘Glen’s Village’: From Childhood Trauma to the Ivy League
EWA Radio: Episode 82

Glen Casey, a young man who escaped the drugs and violence of his West Philadelphia neighborhood, looks on as his school is demolished. (Philadelphia Public School Notebook/"Glen's Village")

Veteran education writer Paul Jablow and multimedia journalist Dorian Geiger discuss their documentary of a young man who escaped the drugs and violence of his West Philadelphia neighborhood thanks to the intensive interventions of a network of support, including his mother, teachers, and social workers. Glen Casey is now a successful student at the University of Pennsylvania and plans on a teaching career. But how unusual is his story, particularly in a public school system of ever-dwindling resources?

EWA Radio

Palo Alto’s Student Suicides
EWA Radio: Episode 73

(Pixabay/kaleido-dp)

What’s behind a cluster of student suicides in the heart of ultra-competitive Silicon Valley?

In a cover story for The Atlantic, journalist Hanna Rosin investigated a disturbing cycle stretching back more than a decade for Palo Alto and Gunn high schools. She spoke with EWA public editor Emily Richmond: How are local educators, parents, and students are responding to the crisis? What’s next for the investigation by federal health officials? And how can reporters improve their own coverage of these kinds of challenging issues? Rosin’s story, “The Silicon Valley Suicides” won 1st Prize for magazine feature writing in the EWA National Awards for Education Reporting.