Blog: The Educated Reporter

Overview

The Educated Reporter

EWA's blog about education issues and topics from a journalist's perspective. The Educated Reporter is anchored by Emily Richmond with contributions from EWA staff and guests.

EWA’s blog about education issues and topics from a journalist’s perspective. The Educated Reporter is anchored by Emily Richmond with contributions from EWA staff and guests.

EWA Radio

Back-to-School Story Ideas: Higher Ed Edition
From free speech to DeVos' policy rollbacks, how will colleges and universities approach new academic year?
(EWA Radio: Episode 174)

Scott Jaschik, the editor and co-founder of Inside Higher Ed, shares his annual “what to watch” list for reporters covering postsecondary education—from the impact of the Trump administration’s policies and rhetoric on international-student enrollment to efforts to train the next generation of workers in high-need fields. Other ideas Jaschik serves up: How are university leaders handling free speech issues on campus, from student protests to controversial speakers?

EWA Radio

Higher Ed ‘Deserts’: Who Lives in Them, and Why it Matters
For millions of would-be college students, convenient and affordable degree programs are out of reach
(EWA Radio: Episode 179)

About seven in 10 undergraduates are “nontraditional” students, according to the U.S. Department of Education, meaning they delayed starting college, have a job or children, or are attending part-time. Meanwhile,, millions of would-be college students live in what some have dubbed higher ed “deserts” without easy or affordable access to postsecondary education.

Blog: The Educated Reporter

Strength in Numbers: Schools Team Up to Focus on Student Improvement
Solving complex problems requires buy-in by campus leaders, experts say

For decades, most efforts to improve opportunities for high-needs students have resembled snowflakes; they come down from above, are completely different from each other, complicate routines, and rarely stick.

However, experts gathered at EWA’s annual conference in Los Angeles this year said at least one kind of reform has a good chance of making long-lasting gains: “school improvement networks.” 

Blog: Higher Ed Beat

College and the American Dream

Pace University is a medium-sized private college in New York with a sticker price of $66,000.  California State University, Northridge serves more than three times as many students (41,000) and has a sticker price for Californians less than a third of Pace’s ($21,000). 

EWA Radio

What Does Hate Look Like in Schools? Education Week and ProPublica Show Us.
Is President Trump's Fiery Rhetoric Fueling Incidents at Public Campuses?
(EWA Radio: Episode 177)

Swastikas scrawled on bathroom walls. A confederate flag hanging behind a teacher’s desk. Chants of “build the wall” aimed at Hispanic students. As part of ProPublica’s “Documenting Hate” project, Education Week tallied incidents of harassment, bullying, graffiti and more at public schools across the country. The team, including Education Week’s Francisco Vara-Orta, sifted through thousands of tips, as well as news coverage of incidents from across the nation.

Blog: The Educated Reporter

How Much Do Charter Schools Cost Districts?
As charter school enrollment grows, researchers disagree on extent of financial impact and who's to blame.

It’s a refrain heard often in arguments against charter schools—they divert money and resources from already cash-strapped traditional public schools.

But determining to what extent that criticism rings true is anything but simple. Despite several studies, estimates of the costs traditional public schools bear as they lose students to charter schools are imprecise and vary considerably.

Blog: The Educated Reporter

After District Error, Reporters Publish Hidden Details on Parkland Shooter’s History
Broward County School Board wants Sun Sentinel reporters held in contempt for publishing redacted details

For reporters, it’s second nature to hold up a redacted paper document to the light to see what might still be visible. Two reporters at the South Florida Sun Sentinel are facing a possible contempt of court charge for using a digital version of this technique on a report — commissioned by Broward County Public Schools — about the shooter at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

EWA Radio

This School Lets Teachers Decide Discipline. Is It Working?
A social-emotional approach to classroom management that's gaining steam nationally (EWA Radio: Episode 168)

image of teacher and students at Ohio Ave school.

What would happen if teachers had the flexibility to handle classroom discipline issues on a case-by-case basis, rather than following top-down mandates from the district or the principal’s office? Writing for The Atlantic, Katherine Reynolds Lewis visited Ohio Avenue Elementary School in Columbus, where an effort to rethink approaches to bad behavior appears to be paying big dividends.

Blog: The Educated Reporter

Data Visualization for Amateurs (and Experts)

Petrified by percentages? Or mesmerized by math?

No worries. Experts assembled for a recent Education Writers Association panel shared strategies to enlist data to tell your story, and how to convey it visually, with tips for math phobes and number nerds alike.

Data is simply a collection of structured stories, said Alvin Chang of Vox Media. Think of every row in a chart as a story, and every visual element as a sentence, he advised. Then ask: How is it better than a sentence? (If it’s not, maybe it shouldn’t be a chart.)