Blog: The Educated Reporter
It’s an education topic that prompts more questions than answers, and it’s expected to spur debate for years to come.
Character education: What is it? What does it look like? Can it be measured?
Experts in education and journalists gathered in New Orleans last month quickly agreed there are numerous terms, definitions, philosophies and methods to explain character education.
Lessons From the Stoneman Douglas School Shooting
Student advocacy, campus safety, and journalism ethics in the spotlight (EWA Radio: Episode 160)
For most journalists, the deadly school shooting in Parkland, Florida is a national story. But for Jessica Bakeman of WLRN public radio, it’s local. She’s closely covered the story for this NPR affiliate in South Florida, including the effects of the shooting on students, educators, and parents, and the student survivors’ growing grassroots campaign to enact stricter gun control laws both in Florida and nationally.
What “chronic absenteeism” means: Researchers typically define chronic absenteeism as missing at least two days of school each month or 10 percent of all their classes. That amounts to about 18 days over the academic year in the average district. One out of every 10 students in public schools is chronically absent nationwide, according to the advocacy group AttendanceWorks.
For now, the early March deadline the Trump administration gave Congress to decide the fate of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals is moot. Major parts of DACA, an Obama-era program created to provide temporarily shield from deportation some young immigrants brought illegally to the United States by their parents, will continue amid legal challenges to the program.
In Wake of Parkland Shooting, Schools Look to Learn From Tragedy
Resources, questions to ask as schools reassess systems for identifying, helping troubled students.
With their bodies submerged in the shallow bayou and their heads bobbing just above the water, Sunny Dawn Summers and her class of high school students talked through the process of harvesting, shucking, and selling oysters.
Just miles from restaurants in New Orleans’ famed French Quarter, the students pondered the costs of labor, boat maintenance, and shipping that get an oyster from the muddy bayou floor to the dinner plate.
As some high schools across the country try new ways to engage and educate students, they often turn to innovative approaches that are still being evaluated to gauge their effectiveness.
Questions to Ask as Schools Weigh Response to Student Walkouts
With student-led protests for stricter gun laws spreading, journalists probe districts' policies, preparedness
In the wake of one of the deadliest school shootings in U.S. history, a groundswell of student activism has jolted the gun control debate and left some school districts coping with the surge of civic engagement.
For education journalists, the developments present an opportunity to examine how local schools and districts are responding to and preparing for student demonstrations and walkouts. Are they encouraging students? Threatening to suspend them? Struggling to come up with a clear strategy?
For Matthew Kauffman, Covering Education Means Covering Data
The award-winning investigative reporter explains why data matters, particularly on the education beat.
The education beat is fertile ground for data journalism. Covering K-12 issues typically requires reporters to make sense of annual standardized test data, district budgets and local property tax rates. Schools and districts also generate reams of data, addressing everything from student discipline to daily attendance and graduation rates.
This wealth of publicly available information can be a gold mine for stories, but reporters may feel intimidated or overwhelmed, and never do any serious analysis or data crunching.
Dozens of journalists gathered in New Orleans this month to explore a dimension of education that often gets short shrift both in schools and in news coverage: developing students’ character and preparing them for active citizenship.
Reporters heard not only from educators, experts, and fellow journalists, but also students from New Orleans and beyond. Issues on tap included the moral education of young people, social and emotional learning, media literacy, and the rapid rise of ”restorative justice” as an alternative to traditional disciplinary practice.
“Word on the Beat” is a regular feature of The Educated Reporter, breaking down the buzzwords and helping you understand the issues of the day.
Word on the beat: First-generation students
School Shooting in Florida Sparks Rethinking on News Coverage
Students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, Lead Fresh Calls for Gun Control
As the nation faces the fallout from the most recent school shooting, which claimed 17 lives in Parkland, Florida, some education reporters are rethinking their professional best practices.
Among the questions: How should news outlets tally school shootings, given that advocacy groups and researchers often disagree on how to “count” campus incidents involving guns?
What is a news organization’s obligation to counter intentional misinformation aimed at influencing public conversations around gun control?