First Prize

School District Violates Rights of Children with Disabilities

Source: The Darien Times

District, Board Defend Policies, Parents Seek Justice

Darien Parents: Systemic Issues Plague Special Education

The Six-Figure Education That Didn’t Exist

Records May Have Been Prematurely Destroyed

Questions Remain After Darien Superintendent Departure

Darien Schools’ Employees Break Silence

Darien Mismanagement Runs Deeper Than Special Ed

Judges’ Comments

“Strong use of interviews, public records laws to document a serious problem with special education programs at Darien schools.”

“It’s often a tough slog to get reliable data – and all the more so when the gatekeepers won’t comment, families fear reprisals, and records are slow to be produced, if at all. David DesRoches was not put off by the rigorous research necessary for a good data-driven investigative package, and he called out every official that would not take questions or provide reliable information. … An important series.”