Blog: The Educated Reporter


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.

Tip Sheet

EWA Tip Sheet: How to Produce a Great Child Care/Early Ed Story

The coronavirus pandemic has created unprecedented interest in child care. Without child care, many parents cannot work. At the same time, providers are struggling to remain open. 

Those facilities that have powered through the pandemic are serving fewer children, have laid off staff and have encountered additional costs, such as cleaning supplies and PPEs. Many have closed, possibly permanently.

EWA Radio

When the Child Care Gap Is a Chasm
How the COVID-19 pandemic worsened existing shortages of early learning and child care programs, slowing down the economic recovery and putting some kids at risk (EWA Radio Episode 264)

Illustration of Mother and Children by Janelle Retka

In many communities, the demand for reliable, affordable child care has long outstripped the number of available spots. The coronavirus pandemic has only worsened the shortage, and many mothers have left the workforce to stay with their young children. In central Washington, the situation is taking a bite out of…

EWA Radio

A Busing Program’s Troubled Legacy
Louisville Courier-Journal investigation: Controversial plan to combat segregation favored white students, hurt Black students and communities
(EWA Radio Episode 263)

Can busing Black students to schools outside of their immediate neighborhoods make public education more equitable? How can reporters better cover the history of such desegregation efforts, and the impact on young people, families, and communities? 

Blog: The Educated Reporter

Covering the Pandemic Child Care Crisis
Experts discuss how existing inequities have been exacerbated in the strained sector

America’s system of child care was already seriously strained by surging expenses, high staff turnover and dwindling capacity before the pandemic upended everything.

“COVID really just highlighted the pre-existing situations and challenges of the early childhood system across the nation,” said Dionne Dobbins, the senior director of research at Child Care Aware of America, a research and advocacy group. “When COVID hit, it was layering it on top of a very fragile child care system — and, you know, some would say it even shattered.”

EWA Radio

Oregon’s ‘Class of 2025:’ Meet the Middle Schoolers
Oregon Public Broadcasting’s multi-year series follows students, families from first grade through high school. (EWA Radio Episode 262)

photo collage of Class of 2025 students

Imagine keeping tabs on the same group of students and families for nearly a decade — Oregon Public Broadcasting has done it, and plans to keep going through the next four years. OPB editor Rob Manning and education reporter Elizabeth Miller share stories from the cast in this project, which is supported in part by an EWA Reporting Fellowship.

Blog: The Educated Reporter

What’s on the Horizon for Early Childhood Education in 2021?
Local and national preschool efforts provide clues

Eight months into the pandemic, voters in Multnomah County, Oregon, approved a new tax on high earners to fund a program called Preschool For All. 

The action represents a major early childhood investment during a recession that threatens to drive many child care providers out of business. It also puts forth a compelling model for solving some of the problems that publicly funded preschool and child care programs in other states and cities haven’t fully addressed. 

What’s on the Horizon for Early Childhood Education in 2021?

EWA Radio

Why More Men Are Missing Out on College
The decline in student enrollment during the coronavirus pandemic is seven times as steep for men as women, raising questions about the long-term impact on individuals and communities (EWA Radio Episode 261)

image of male student by Kate Flock for Hechinger Report

COVID-19 is remaking the college landscape, especially when it comes to who’s pursuing –  and who’s pausing – on higher education. New data shows the decline in enrollment is seven times as large for men as for women. 

Blog: Higher Ed Beat

How COVID-19 Is Crushing Colleges’ Budgets
Experts offer story ideas on inequities, budget squeezes and college closures.

The COVID-19 pandemic “is the most significant crisis (higher education) has faced, even going back to the late ‘60s, early ‘70s, and the Vietnam War protests,” said Carlos Santiago, the Massachusetts commissioner of higher education and a 40-year veteran of the sector.

Blog: The Educated Reporter

Member Spotlight: ‘Breaking News Monkey’ Rises to Editor and Restaurateur
EWA Member Emmeline Zhao turned a side hustle into a second career.

After a full day of overseeing The 74 Million’s reporting projects and multimedia offerings on COVID-19’s impact on educational inequities, Emmeline Zhao quickly shifts to her second career: Managing a new Greenwich Village restaurant that the New York Times has praised as a delicious “synthesis of Chinese ideas and the Hudson Valley farm-to-table movement.”

Blog: Higher Ed Beat

3 Surprising Ways COVID-19 Is Changing College Admissions And Tests
Experts offer new angles for reporters covering SAT, ACT and the test-optional movement.

Prom, graduation, the SAT. For decades, those three springtime rites of passage have been important steps for American teens marching toward adulthood.

But the coronavirus pandemic upended those traditions for the 3.7 million students in the high school class of 2020. 

Blog: The Educated Reporter

Investigative Reporters: What to Do When The Story Changes
Three strategies for piloting journalistic projects through news and change.

It’s hard enough these days for journalists to get the time, resources and editorial support they need to pursue ambitious projects. So when the story changes, or news, of, say, a pandemic breaks, reporters may fear that their story and hard work will be abandoned.  

But reporters who build good rapport with their editors, stay organized, and work out ways to incorporate new developments into their stories can save and even elevate their projects, according to teams of journalists from The Washington Post and APM Reports.

EWA Radio

Who’s Tracking Student Learning Loss?
In Washington, a lack of data could hurt schools looking to help student catch up (EWA Radio Episode 260)

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, states are largely leaving it up to individual districts to decide how to track how much — or little — of the standard school curriculum are K-12 students learning during the pandemic. One reporter surveyed her state and discovered that many communities aren’t even trying to find out. Joy Resmovits of The Seattle Times offers insights, tips, and questions to ask of state and local education officials when looking at student learning loss amid the COVID-19 pandemic.