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.

Blog: The Educated Reporter

What Reporters Need to Know About the Science of Reading
Fresh insights, tips on building trust with teachers on a sensitive subject

Are elementary school teachers teaching reading with research-approved methods? Or are they sticking with practices that studies indicate are less than ideal?

In a recent EWA webinar, two reporters joined a school leader to discuss what reporters need to know about the science of reading, and how to report on these issues in any community.

Blog: The Educated Reporter

Supreme Court Rules on Public Money for Religious Schools
Case challenges Blaine Amendments, separation of church and state in school choice programs

Editor’s note: This post was updated on June 30, 2020, after the Supreme Court ruled in the Espinoza v. Montana Department of Revenue ​case.

The U.S. Supreme Court today ruled that Montana unconstitutionally prevented public dollars from following students to private schools — potentially creating a landmark decision on the separation of church and state in public education. (Read the full opinion here.)

EWA Radio

A New Year on the K-12 Beat
What’s ahead in 2020: Equity, Civics, Safety Top Washington Post Reporter’s List
(EWA Radio: Episode 225)

Moriah Balingit, who covers education for The Washington Post, discusses what she sees as key story lines for the K-12 beat in 2020, from educational equity to civics and campus safety. Are public schools adequately preparing young people to become  engaged and informed citizens? What’s the potential impact on students and families of the Trump administration’s plans to cut access to food stamps? How are school safety measures affecting the climate on campus?

Blog: The Educated Reporter

Finding the Details: How to Report on Seclusion and Restraint in Schools
News investigations put spotlight on troubling practices

When former WAMU education reporter Jenny Abamu first saw a seclusion room, she was shaken. 

She described the spaces she viewed in Fairfax County, Virginia: rooms built within rooms with no windows or ventilation, and discolorations where students had defecated on the floor. 

“Some of those kids were in that room over a hundred times in a school year,” Abamu recalled. “People thought it was normal. I was scared. I thought, ‘This is not normal.’” 

Blog: Higher Ed Beat

How to Help First-Generation Students Persist Through College
Experts say assisting students takes a 'larger cultural shift'

When Pete Gooden went to college, he had an all-too-common experience. 

“As a first-generation student, I was just coasting through college, and I was just trying to navigate on my own without support,” he said. 

Eventually, he dropped out. After earning his degree at age 30, Gooden began working for KIPP Through College Chicago, where he’s now the director—amazed to find a program that offered the help he once needed. 

EWA Radio

Will Betsy DeVos Outlast All of Trump’s Cabinet Members?
Plus, what to watch for when presidential candidates talk education
(EWA Radio: Episode 223)

February 7 will mark the three-year anniversary of Betsy DeVos’ confirmation as the U.S. secretary of education. Few observers had bet she would stick around this long. But today, DeVos is one of the longest-serving members of President Trump’s cabinet. Rebecca Klein of The Huffington Post recently talked with dozens of people about the education secretary’s tenure, crafting an in-depth analysis of what motivates her decisions and keeps her on the job.

Tip Sheet

EWA Tip Sheet: How to Tell If Your College Is Going Bankrupt

By scrutinizing enrollment data, external financial pressures, operating revenue and expenses, and tuition discounting, reporters can start spotting red flags in the finances of public and private colleges they cover. 

Blog: The Educated Reporter

Covering Education Amid Threats of War or Terrorism
Veteran education journalists offer suggestions on working through national security threats

On the spectacular blue-skied morning of 9/11/2001, I was a staff writer for U.S News & World Report attending a not particularly exciting press conference a few blocks from the White House. Suddenly, someone burst into the room and announced “Our nation is under attack.” We all rushed outside, where thousands of office workers were milling in the streets because the government and all transportation had just been shut down. Warnings of a plane heading toward the White House (and, thus, us) sparked through the crowd like an electric arc. 

EWA Radio

Teachers Fight for Student Loan Debt Relief
NPR investigation finds thousands of borrowers wrongly denied federal forgiveness
(EWA Radio: Episode 217)

Two federal programs intended to steer college students toward public service jobs like teaching in high-poverty schools instead became mired in missteps, as recipients found their grants wrongly converted into high-interest loans. Cory Turner of NPR’s education team spent 18 months looking at problems with the TEACH Grant program.

Blog: Higher Ed Beat

Three Takeaways From Chicago’s Largest Charter School Network
At Noble campuses, it's 'college prep from the moment you walk in the door'

From the exterior, Muchin College Prep doesn’t look much like a high school. It’s located in an unremarkable office building in downtown Chicago, where an elevator carries visitors to the seventh-floor campus. There, the walls are festooned with college banners, classrooms are bustling with discussions and group work, and football helmets rest on top of a long row of lockers.