2014 Award Winners Announced
National Awards for Education Reporting

March 26, 2015 (WASHINGTON, DC)—The Education Writers Association is pleased to announce the winners of the 2014 National Awards for Education Reporting, honoring exceptional journalism from print, radio and online media outlets across the country.

The 33 honored entries hail from a diverse array of media outlets that range from three-person newsrooms to outlets with hundreds of reporters. More than 240 entrants submitted roughly 360 entries in 18 categories.

Winners will be honored at EWA’s 68th National Seminar April 20-22 in Chicago. First-place honorees receive $250 and are eligible for the Fred M. Hechinger Grand Prize for Distinguished Education Reporting, which will be announced on April 20 during the conference.

“The education journalism community can be proud of the exemplary craftsmanship and impressive command of the issues displayed by this year’s award winners,” said Caroline Hendrie, EWA’s executive director. “Their work underscores the essential role that high-quality coverage plays in informing the public about critically important issues in education.”

Through deep reporting, skillful storytelling, and astute analysis, this year’s honorees bring to life complex policy issues ranging from common academic standards to campus sex assaults. They unspool moving tales of homelessness, substance abuse, and racial isolation. They take novel approaches to presenting data and using visual media. And they hold authorities to account in investigations that uphold the proud tradition of watchdog journalism.

The reporting award, an EWA tradition stretching back five decades, was independently judged by 20 current and former editors and reporters as well as the EWA Contest Review Board. No judge reviewed an entry submitted by his or her current or recent employer nor the category in which that entry appeared.

The panel of judges includes:

  • Denise Smith Amos, The Florida Times-Union
  • Daarel Burnette, Chalkbeat Tennessee
  • Kim Clark, Money
  • Martha Dalton, Public Broadcasting Atlanta
  • Larry Gordon, Los Angeles Times
  • Paul Fain, Inside Higher Ed
  • Carole Feldman, The Associated Press
  • Steve Friess, freelance magazine reporter (formerly Politico)
  • Cathy Grimes, Graduate School at Virginia Tech (formerly Daily News, Virginia)
  • Joe Grimm, Michigan State University
  • Alyson Klein, Education Week
  • Evelyn Larrubia, Southern California Public Radio
  • Kathleen Manzo, Education Week
  • Dan Mihalopoulos, Chicago Sun-Times
  • Christopher Quinn, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
  • Erin Richards, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
  • Lauren Roth, Orlando Sentinel
  • Jennifer Ruark, The Chronicle of Higher Education
  • Scott Smallwood, The Chronicle of Higher Education
  • Ki Sung, MindShift at KQED 

The EWA Contest Review Board includes:

  • Chair:
    • Cornelia Grumman, Director of Policy and Strategic Communications at the University of Chicago Urban Education Institute (formerly of The Chicago Tribune)
  • Members:
    • Stephanie Banchero, Senior Program Officer for the Education Program at The Joyce Foundation (formerly of The Wall Street Journal)
    • Kent Fischer, Media Relations Director and Policy Adviser at Bates College (formerly of The Dallas Morning News)
    • Louise Kiernan, Associate Professor at the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University (formerly of the Chicago Tribune)
    • Scott Widmeyer, Founder and Managing Partner of Widmeyer Communications – A Finn Partners Company.

EWA is grateful to the Edwin Gould Foundation for sponsoring this year’s awards.

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About EWA. The mission of the Education Writers Association ( is to increase the quality and quantity of education coverage to create a better-informed society. As the professional organization of members of the media who cover education at all levels, EWA has worked for more than 65 years to help journalists get the story right. Today, EWA has more than 3,000 members benefiting from our high-quality programs, training, information, support, and recognition.