2006 National Awards for Education Reporting

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Education Writers Association (EWA), the national professional association of education reporters and writers, today announced the winners of the 2006 National Awards for Education Reporting, the prestigious national competition for education writing. The annual contest honors the best education reporting in the print and broadcast media 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 2006 calendar year.

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 will be presented to the best of the first prize winners. EWA is also pleased to announce the addition of beat reporting prizes for reporters in both small and large media markets. Prizes, including the grand prize, will be given at the awards banquet at 7 p.m. May 5 during the Education Writers Association’s 60th National Seminar,which will be held May 3-5 at the Marriott Downtown Los Angeles.

Contest judging was conducted independently, under the direction of Chief Judge Adrianne Flynn of the Philip Merrill College of Journalism, University of Maryland. This year’s panel of distinguished judges included Karin Chenoweth of the Achievement Alliance; Stephen Crane of the Phillip Merrill College of Journalism, University of Maryland; Stephanie Desmon of the Baltimore Sun; Jay Goldman of the American Association of School Administrators; Retha Hill of BET Interactive; Rafael Lorente of the Phillip Merrill College of Journalism, University of Maryland; Chuck Neubauer of the Los Angeles Times; Deborah Potter of Newslab; Frank Quine of the Philip Merrill College of Journalism, University of Maryland; and Lee Thornton of the Phillip Merrill College of Journalism, University of Maryland.

Recent winners of the Fred M. Hechinger Grand Prize for Distinguished Education Reporting include Kati Phillips, Linda Lutton and Jonathan Lipman of the Daily Southtown; Joshua Benton, Holly Hacker and Herb Booth of The Dallas Morning News; and Christine Willmsen and Maureen O’Hagan of the Seattle Times.

I. Newspapers under 100,000 Circulation

A. Breaking or Hard News

  • First prize: Ben Finley, Harry Yanoshak and Jo Ciavaglia, Bucks County Courier Times, “Tyrone Lewis Graduation”

B. Feature, News Feature or Issue Package

C. Series or Group of Articles

  • First Prize: Stu Whitney, Argus Leader, “Sports Transfers Shift Balance in S.D.”
  • Second Prize: Julie Mack, Kalamazoo Gazette, “The Promise”
  • Special Citation: Jennifer Torres, The Record, “A Future in the Fields?”

D. Investigative Reporting

E. Opinion

  • Special Citation: Jane Nicholes, Press-Register, “Struggling School Board”

II. Newspapers over 100,000 Circulation

A. Breaking or Hard News

  • First Prize: Susan Snyder, Martha Woodall, Kellie Patrick, Kristen Graham, Keith Herbert, Jennifer Moroz, Nancy Phillips, Terry Bitman, Melanie Burney, Thomas Ginsberg, Dan Hardy, Todd Mason, Alletta Emeno, Dylan Purcell, Philadelphia Inquirer, “Amish Schoolhouse Murders”
  • Second Prize: Daniel Golden, Zachary Seward and Steve Stecklow, The Wall Street Journal, “The Fall of Larry Summers”

B. Feature, News Feature or Issue Package

  • First Prize: Stephanie Banchero, Chicago Tribune, “The Education of John Cobbins”
  • Second Prize:Mark Waller, The Times-Picayune, “The Graduate”
  • Special Citation: Ron Matus, St. Petersburg Times, “Ninth or Never”
  • Special Citation: Emily Richmond, Las Vegas Sun, “The Recruiter”

C. Series or Group of Articles

  • Special Citation: Phil Trexler and Carol Biliczky, Akron Beacon Journal, “Felons in Dorms”
  • Special Citation: Justin Pope, Associated Press, “The Admissions Game”

D. Investigative Reporting

  • First Prize: Jean Rimbach and Kathleen Carroll, The Record, “Lessons in Waste”
  • Second Prize (tie): Christine Willmsen and Michael Ko,Seattle Times, “High School Recruiting Scandal”
  • Second Prize (tie): Brett Blackledge, The Birmingham News, “Corruption in Community College System”
  • Special Citation: Frank Bass, Ben Feller and Nicole Ziegler Dizon, Associated Press, “No Child Loophole”
  • Special Citation: Kent Fischer, Molly Motley Blythe, Tawnell Hobbs and Pete Slover, Dallas Morning News, “Dallas School Spending”
  • Special Citation: Scott Stephens, Bob Paynter and Sandra Livingston, The Plain Dealer, “Who’s Profiting from Ohio’s Charter Schools?”

E. Opinion

  • First Prize: Joshua Benton, The Dallas Morning News, “Columns”
  • Second Prize: Carolyn Davis and Chris Satullo, The Philadelphia Inquirer, “Upward Bound: the Success of Philadelphia School Reform”
  • Special Citation: Paul Greenberg, David Barham and Kane Webb, Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, “Arkansas Education”
  • Special Citation: Rodger Jones, Jim Mitchell and Mike Hashimoto, Dallas Morning News, “High-Stakes Cheating”
  • Special Citation: Gregory Stanford, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, “Diversity”

III. Beat Reporting

A. Small Media or Market

  • First Prize: Scott Carlson, Chronicle of Higher Education, “Libraries and Archives”
  • Second Prize: Diette Courrege, Post and Courier, “Beat Reporting”
  • Special Citation: Peter Schmidt, Chronicle of Higher Education, “Affirmative Action”

B. Large Media or Market

  • First Prize: Daniel Golden, Wall Street Journal, “God and Harvard”
  • Second Prize: Rosalind Rossi, Chicago Sun-Times, “Beat Reporting”
  • Special Citation: Joshua Benton, Dallas Morning News, “The Education Beat”
  • Special Citation: Kimberly Miller, Palm Beach Post, “A Collection”

IV. Magazines

A. National Circulation

B. Regional or Local Circulation

  • First Prize: Douglas McGray, West Magazine (Los Angeles Times), “The Invisibles”
  • Second Prize: Liza Mundy, Washington Post Magazine, “Left Out”
  • Special Citation: Cindy Loose, Washington Post Magazine, “Med School Libre”

V. Special Interest, Institutional and Trade Publications

  • First Prize: Glenn Cook, Kathleen Vail, Lawrence Hardy and Naomi Dillon, American School Board Journal, “Schooling Katrina’s Kids”
  • Second Prize: Paul Fain, Chronicle of Higher Education, “The Presidency”

VI. Television

A. Hard News and Investigative

  • First Prize: Craig Cheatham, Gary Womack and Genie Garner, KMOV-TV, “Left Behind”
  • Second Prize: Jeff Hirsh, Eric Gerhardt and Dan Hurley, WKRC-TV, “Sham Dunk”

B. Documentary and Feature

  • No Prizes Awarded

VII. Radio