Amendment to the Bylaws of the Education Writers Association
According to Article XV of the EWA Bylaws, amendments may be proposed by the board of directors or by petition of five active (journalist) members. Amendments must be submitted and sent to the membership and require the affirmative vote of two-thirds of those voting.
On April 6, 2011, the Board of Directors voted in favor of amending two sections of its bylaws. Amendment No. 1 would change Article II (“Membership of the Organization”) and Amendment No. 2 would revise Article IV (“Officers and Board of Directors.”)
Amendment No. 1 would rename and redefine the association’s two main membership categories. Under the proposal, “active members” would become “journalist members” and “associate members” would be relabeled “advocate members.” The two categories would also be redefined to draw clearer and more relevant distinctions between the two types of membership.
Amendment No. 2 would substitute the term “advocate” for “associate” to reflect the renaming of membership categories. It also would require that the board president be a working journalist and allow for changes in the balance of journalist and advocate members on the board.
Amendment No. 1:
Current language in Article II, Section 1.1 (in relevant part):
a) Active membership shall be open to those persons who spend a substantial portion of their time reporting about or interpreting education, and who are staff members of newspapers, press associations, radio and television stations, or of magazines and newsletters with a circulation that is general rather than restricted solely or primarily to members of an organization. Active membership also shall be open to persons who spend a substantial portion of their time reporting about or interpreting education on a freelance basis for any of the above media.
b) Associate membership shall be open to those persons who spend a substantial portion of their time reporting about or interpreting education, and who are members of the staff of trade/professional publications serving a restricted audience (e.g., members of an organization or employees of an industry), or who are employed by an educational institution or organization, or who are employed by a business or industry directly and primarily related to education. Associate membership also shall be open to persons who spend a substantial portion of their time reporting about or interpreting education on a freelance basis for the publications, institutions, organizations, businesses or industries referred to above.
Amended Article II, Section 1.1 (in relevant part):
a) Journalist members include individuals from organizations or corporations that gather and disseminate news as their primary function and have clear standards governing the influence of their funding source(s) on their newsgathering methods and priorities. The definition of journalist also includes freelancers whose primary body of work is for entities that fit the above description, staffers at press associations or journalism education associations, and journalism instructors.
b) Advocate membership is open to individuals who work for institutions, organizations, foundations, and corporations directly or primarily devoted to education or educational issues, but whose primary purpose is advocacy for particular policy solutions, organizations, ideas, or products.
In cases where a person’s membership designation is not immediately clear, the EWA executive director will make the final determination.
Amendment No. 2:
Article IV, Section 1.1 (in relevant part):
The president, one vice-president and the secretary shall be active members. One vice-president shall be an associate member.
The president shall be a working journalist. One vice-president and the secretary shall be journalist members. One vice-president shall be an advocate member.
Article IV, Section 1.2 (in relevant part):
A majority plus two board members shall be journalist members.
A majority of board members shall be journalist members or those who have spent a significant portion of their careers in journalism organizations or journalism education.
Article IV, Section 1.3 (in relevant part):
The vice-president who is an active member shall serve as vice-chairman.
The vice-president who is an advocate member shall serve as vice-chairman.