Make Your Editor Smile With Fresh Story Ideas
Greetings From EWA's Director
Before coming to EWA this month, I was an education
reporter and editor for more than 20 years. Looking back, I can't
recall a more interesting time to cover the field. Or a more
That's where we come in. At EWA, we're committed to
education journalism as a profession. Drawing on the energy of our
members, we aim to help the profession meet its challenges and fulfill
its potential. After all, society is counting on you to play a vital
role: to inform and influence how our democracy carries out its
responsiblity to educate its citizens.
It was great fun to meet many of you in San
Francisco last month at EWA's National Seminar. If you couldn't make
it, be sure to mine the EWA in SF blog for story ideas, perspective on
issues, and reporting tips. While you're at it, check out our new
Source Search, Freelance Database, and Resource Center, where you'll
find new stories, reports, and other publications.
In the months ahead, you'll hear from me about new
organizational directions. In the meantime, don't hesitate to contact
me with your thoughts and suggestions.
ON THE BLACKBOARD
EWA is pleased to offer a new searchable database of more than 1,000
sources on children and education, with full contact information,
links to their websites and information about their areas of
The Public Editor
Call Linda Perlstein for help with your stories. And don't forget to
read The Educated Reporter for tips on how to do your job better.
Press Release Center
Post your press release or read about upcoming events or major reports
on EWA's website.
Looking for Work?
Check out EWA's Job Center for the latest vacancies in education
journalism and communications. Visit our jobs page today!
Pump Up Your Summer Reporting With Fresh Ideas
School is out for summer, but EWA has collected plenty of
story ideas to keep you busy during the break.If you didn't make
it to San Francisco for our 2010 national conference, check
our recap page for photos, blog posts, videos, and presentations.
Stories for Higher Education Reporters
New EWA board member and Inside Higher Ed co-founder
Scott Jaschik has a dozen or more story ideas on the
higher ed beat. Here are a few.
Community colleges. Community colleges take pride in being open-access institutions. But some are starting to tighten up admission standards. Public four year universities are tightening admission standards, too.
For-profit institutions. One of the big impacts of the recession has been a surge in enrollment in for-profit institutions. Look at who's going to these schools. How are they paying?
These ideas are based on a blog description written by higher education reporter Tim Barker of the St. Louis Post Dispatch.
Stories for K-12 Reporters
Reporters at EWA's annual meeting talked to top researchers and
collected leads about underreported stories on the education beat.
School budgets.Rick Hess of the American Enterprise
Institute says a wealth of stories can be found by looking into
teacher salaries, step increases and cost- of- living allowances for
Curriculum topics. Steven A. Schneider, senior program director at West Ed, says reporters should look more carefully at the "math wars" that can flare up as districts develop curriculum or choose textbooks, and how those debates relate to the skills measured by standardized tests.
Money for special education. The American Institute for
Research's Thomas Parrish says reporters often overlook several
factors in determining how committed a school district is to special
education. Reporters should take these steps:review test scores,
count how often a school district has been sued, and examine the
budget to see where money is being spent on special education.
Stories for Preschool Reporters
Congress provided $5 billion for early learning programs last
year when it passed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act
and early childhood advocates say reporters can play an important
role bridging the gap between policy, government, and preschools.
Preschool and remediation. New America Foundation's Lisa
Guernsey urges reporters to examine issues surrounding
remediation. She says reporters should pose two questions: how many
students are coming to kindergarten behind and how are school
districts addressing the issue?
Reading to tots. Marci Young, project director at Pre-K
Now, advises reporters to analyze the impact of intervening early when students have reading problems. It could reduce the number labeled learning disabled.
Preschool progress. What are the rules preventing school
districts from working more closely with preschools and are there
duplications in programs? Reporters should ask the
tough questions, says Linda Sullivan-Dudzic, special programs
director for Bremerton School District in Bremerton, Washington.
Want to learn more about real-time reporting? Sign up for the
Online News Association's summer school series: The Real-Time Web.
Investigative Reporters and Editors is bringing its Better Watchdog
workshop to Denver July 24-25. Sign up here.
Follow EWA on
Subscribe to EWA's RSS Feeds
Please send new items and member news to Mesha Williams at