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2005 National Awards in Education Reporting

WASHINGTON, D.C.– The Education Writers Association (EWA), the national professional organization of education reporters and writers, today announced the winners of the 2005 National Awards for Education Reporting, the prestigious national competition for education journalism. The annual contest honors the best education reporting in the 18 print and broadcast media categories and is the only independent contest of its kind in the United States. Contest entries were limited to stories published or broadcast for the first time during the 2005 calendar year.In all, 48 first prize, second prize and special citations were awarded to 79 journalists from 35 media outlets. Five journalists won multiple awards or were part of multiple teams that won awards.

A total of 486 entries were judged in this year’s contest. First prize winners receive a cash prize of $150 and a plaque. Winners of second prizes and special citations receive certificates. The Fred M. Hechinger Grand Prize for Distinguished Education Reporting includes an award of $1,000 and a plaque, and is presented to the best of the first prize winners. Prizes, including the announcement of the Grand Prize, will be given at the awards banquet June 3 at 6:30 p.m. during the EWA’s 59th National Seminar, June 1-3, 2006, at the Astor Crowne Plaza in New Orleans.

Recent winners of the Fred M. Hechinger Grand Prize for Distinguished Education Reporting include Joshua Benton, Holly Hacker and Herb Booth of The Dallas Morning News, Christine Willmsen and Maureen O’Hagan of the Seattle Times, and Eric Eyre and Scott Finn of the Charleston (W.Va.) Gazette.

Contest judging was conducted independently under the direction of co-Chief Judges Chris Harvey and Adrianne Flynn of the Philip Merrill College of Journalism at the University of Maryland. This year’s panel of distinguished judges included: Karin Chenoweth, a senior writer for the Education Trust; Ira Chinoy, a lecturer at the University of Maryland and a former director of computer-assisted reporting at The Washington Post; Stephanie Desmon, a reporter for The Baltimore Sun; Tamara Henry, a doctoral fellow at the Philip Merrill College of Journalism and a former reporter for USA Today; Amy Goldstein, a staff writer for The Washington Post; Retha Hill, vice president of content for BET Interactive; Rob Hotakainen, a correspondent for The Minneapolis Star Tribune Washington Bureau; Sue Kopen Katcef, a broadcast lecturer at the Philip Merrill College of Journalism; Michele Norris, host of NPR’s All Things Considered; Frank Quine, assistant dean at the Philip Merrill College of Journalism; and Dr. Lee Thornton, the Richard Eaton chair in Broadcast Journalism at the University of Maryland and a former CBS News White House correspondent.

Breaking or Hard News – Under 100,000

Special Citation: Karen Rivedal, The Wisconsin State Journal, “Barrows Case”

Feature, News Feature or Issue Package – Under 100,000

First Prize: JoAnne Young, The Lincoln Journal Star,Bullying’s Tragic Results
Second Prize: Challen Stephens, The Huntsville Times, “On the Road to Better Education”
Special Citation: Jennifer Torres, The Record, “Inequality in Class”

IC: Series or Group of Articles – Under 100,000 Special Citation:

Brenda Wade Schmidt, The Argus Leader, “Schools in Peril”
Special Citation: Challen Stephens, The Huntsville Times, “Dyslexia Spells Trouble”

Investigative Reporting – Under 100,000

First Prize: Linda Lutton, Kati Phillips and Jonathan Lipman, Daily Southtown, “Reverse Robin Hood”
Second Prize: Tracie Mauriello, The Republican-American, “Skipping Class”
Special Citation: Scott Reeder, The Small Newspaper Group, “The Hidden Costs of Tenure”

Opinion — Under 100,000

Special Citation: Dick Hughes, The Statesman Journal, “Willamette ESD Mess Stinks on So Many Levels”
Special Citation: Bill Parkinson, Larry Hicks, Lori Goodlin, The York Dispatch, “Intelligent Design”

Breaking or Hard News — Over 100,000

First Prize: Bill Bush, Jennifer Smith Richards, The Columbus Dispatch, “Sexual Assault at Mifflin High School”
Second Prize: Manya Brachear, Tracy Dell’Angela, Margaret Ramirez, Lori Olszewski, Stephanie Banchero, and John McCormick, The Chicago Tribune, “Catholic Schools Fight for Survival”

Feature, News Feature or Issue Package — Over 100,000

First Prize: Tony Bizjak, The Sacramento Bee, “Road Scholars”
Second Prize: John Merrow, New York Times: Education Life, “Survival of the Fittest”
Special Citation: John Hechinger, The Wall Street Journal, “When $26 Billion Isn’t Enough?”
Special Citation: Suein Hwang, The Wall Street Journal, “The New White Flight”

Series or Group of Articles — Over 100,000

First Prize: Burt Hubbard, Nancy Mitchell, Holly Yettick, and Jennifer Miller, Rocky Mountain News, “Early Exit: Denver’s Graduation Gap”
Second Prize: Laura Heinauer and Ralph K.M. Haurwitz, Austin American-Statesman, “Falling Short”
Special Citation: Penelope Overton and Robert Frahm, The Hartford Courant, “Repairing Tech Ed”
Special Citation: Diane Rado, The Chicago Tribune, “Education Finance”

Investigative Reporting –Over 100,000

First Prize: Tanya Schevitz, Todd Wallack, San Francisco Chronicle, “UC Pay Practices”
Second Prize: Pete Slover, Jessica Leeder, Tawnell Hobbs, Kent Fischer, The Dallas Morning News, “Dallas School Corruption and Waste”
Special Citation: Cynthia Kopkowski, The Palm Beach Post, “How Safe is Your Child Riding on the School Bus?”

Opinion — Over 100,000

First Prize: Joshua Benton, The Dallas Morning News, “Columns”
Second Prize: Louis Freedberg, The San Francisco Chronicle, “Columns”

Beat Reporting — Small Media or Market

First Prize: Alan Richard, Education Week
Second Prize: Sean Cavanagh, Education Week

Beat Reporting–Large Media or Market

First Prize: Marcella Bombardieri, The Boston Globe
Second Prize: John Hechinger, The Wall Street Journal
Special Citation: Christine MacDonald, The Detroit News

Magazines–National Circulation

First Prize: Liz Willen, Bloomberg Markets, “Schools and Scandals”
Special Citation: Justin Ewers, U.S. News & World Report, “Class Conscious”

Magazines–Regional or Local Circulation

First Prize: Steve Hendrix, Washington Post Magazine, “Why Stevie Can’t Spell”
Second Prize: Brooke Lea Foster, Washingtonian Magazine, “This Is Not Real Life”
Special Citation: Phuong Ly, Washington Post Magazine, “Setting the Stage”
Special Citation: Mary Van de Kamp Nohl, Milwaukee Magazine, “The Lesson: A Tale of Two Schools”

Special Interest, Institutional and Trade Publications

First Prize: Goldie Blumenstyk, Piper Fogg, Sara Hebel, Jeffrey Selingo, Erin Strout, The Chronicle of Higher Education,”What College Presidents Think”
Second Prize: David Glenn, The Chronicle of Higher Education, “Cloak and Classroom”
Special Citation: Goldie Blumenstyk, Scott Carlson, Lila Guterman, Sara Hebel, Becky Pendergast, The Chronicle of Higher Education, “The Birth of a Research University”
Special Citation: Glenn Cook, The American School Board Journal, “AD/HD”

Hard News and Investigative — Television

First Prize: Matt Mauro, KWCH-TV, “Continuing Coverage of Evolution”
Second Prize: Jenny Cunningham, KCTS-TV, “Lessons Learned: Gates Goes to High School”

Documentary and Feature — Television

First Prize: John Merrow, Carrie Glasser, John Heus, Shae Isaacs and David Wald, Learning Matters, Inc.,”Declining by Degrees”
Second Prize: Ben Saboonchian, Peter Frerichs, Mona Locke, Peter Gamba, KIRO Telelvison, “The Learning Curve”

Radio

First Prize: Anna Bensted, John Davidow, Bob Oakes, Martha Bebinger, Monica Brady, Audie Cornish, Margaret Evans, George Hicks, WBUR, “Reading, Writing and Race”
Second Prize: Kara McGuirk, Kathryn Kolbert, Margot Adler, Erin Mooney, and Ingrid Lakey,
Justice Talking, Annenberg Public Policy Center and National Public Radio,”Special Education”