Blog: Higher Ed Beat

Overview

Higher Education Beat

A blog about issues affecting postsecondary education.

A blog about issues affecting postsecondary education.

Blog: The Educated Reporter

Under the Circumstances, No Pomp for the Class of 2020
Telling the story of a senior year changed by coronavirus

Few years are as laden with symbolic touchstones as the senior year of high school. With this year’s graduates denied those rites of passage due to the coronavirus pandemic — or at least the traditional rituals associated with them — emotions are running understandably high. 

For Frances Suavillo, an immigrant from the Philippines who is the valedictorian at Carson High School near Los Angeles, the change in plans wasn’t easy.

Blog: The Educated Reporter

New Grants Help Journalists Through the Coronavirus Crisis
These organizations will provide money for freelance projects, help out furloughed reporters

The coronavirus pandemic has created unprecedented demand for high-quality news and information – and destroyed the finances of many of the news outlets that served that demand. Luckily, a growing number of organizations are attempting to provide cash to journalists who wish to continue informing their communities during this crisis.

Here’s a list of organizations offering help to journalists during the crisis:

 

Blog: Higher Ed Beat

Five Story Angles on College Admissions During the Coronavirus Pandemic
How higher ed reporters can plan for their next enrollment-related story

Amidst the tsunami of headline-making impacts from the coronavirus, this spring’s closure of nearly all the nation’s 4,200 college campuses could have some of the longest-term effects.

As higher education scrambles to provide instruction and prepare for whatever is next, “the big issue that’s out there is what will enrollment look like in fall 2020,” says Terry Hartle, a senior vice president at the American Council on Education, the largest membership organization of colleges.

Blog: The Educated Reporter

Talking With Teens: Tips for Interviewing Adolescents
How finding, and elevating, teen voices enriches reporting

While reporting on a school in a neighborhood with a high homicide rate, Los Angeles Times reporter Sonali Kohli stressed to students she interviewed that they were empowered to control the conversation. 

Many teenagers view a professional journalist as an authority figure and might feel pressure to give “correct” answers, Kohli said. That’s why she starts each interview with the premise that a student can end the conversation at any time or ask their own questions.

EWA Radio

When College Students Aren’t College-Ready
Thousands of students struggle at Chicago’s two-year colleges. Is an overhaul of developmental ed. programs enough to help?
(EWA Radio: Episode 231)

In Chicago, thousands of students are earning high school diplomas but showing up at the city’s two-year colleges unprepared for the next step in their academic journeys. In a new project, Kate McGee of WBEZ looked at efforts to buck that trend, including an innovative program developed not by outside experts but the system’s own faculty.  Along the way, she explored a number of questions: Do students benefit more from remedial classes that re-teach them material they were supposed to master in high school, or from being placed directly into college classes with additional support like tutoring

Blog: The Educated Reporter

Five Tips for Education Reporters Covering the Coronavirus
How COVID-19 health crisis could impact students and schools, and what education leaders are doing to prepare

As the number of reported cases of the COVID-19, also known as the coronavirus, continues to mount in the U.S., here are five things education reporters should keep in mind when covering the health crisis and its impact on schools and colleges. (This post will be periodically updated as circumstances warrant.)

Blog: The Educated Reporter

Super Tuesday: The Education Angles
What's at stake for public education in the 2020 election?

A flurry of education-related conversation surfaced at the most recent Democratic presidential debate on Feb. 25, as candidates exchanged jabs and defended their positions on charter schools, student loan debt, and setting up young people for meaningful careers.

The 10th debate came at a pivotal moment, just days before voters in 14 states will cast their ballots on Super Tuesday (March 3). With education taking a back seat in prior debates, the rapid-fire discussion caught the attention of education journalists and pundits.

Blog: Higher Ed Beat

Investigating a University’s Ties to China
How one reporter used her EWA Fellowship to examine a school's growing Chinese population

The number of students from mainland China attending an American university has increased by more than 50 percent in the last decade. For many campuses, that student population has become a key source of tuition revenue and talent. For those who see China as an economic, political and military threat, this rapid growth has raised alarms.

Blog: Higher Ed Beat

5 Tips for Covering Students’ Paths to College
Reporters offer advice on tracking down students, getting past roadblocks

This school year, two Chalkbeat reporters in Detroit and Newark are examining whether low-income students from struggling schools are ready for the rigors of college.

Education statistics tell a sobering story: For many students, no. But Lori Higgins, the bureau chief for Chalkbeat Detroit, and Patrick Wall, a senior reporter for Chalkbeat Newark, wanted to delve deeper into the challenges spelled out in the data.

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. 

Tip Sheet

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

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. 

Participants who contributed to this advice:

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.