California Educator

August 2016

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CTA's John Swett Awards Honors for media coverage of education in California By MIKE MYSLINSKI S ixteen exceptional feats of journalism by individuals and media outlets were honored with CTA's 57th annual John Swett Awards for Media Excellence. Th e w innin g stori e s, al l from 2015, looked at efforts to unionize a chain of charter schools in Los Angeles Unified School District (L AUSD), how Bay Area teachers are being priced out of cities by soaring home prices, and inspiring teach- ers profiled in a Sacramento TV station's "Teacher of the Month" series, among other topics. T h e a w a r d s h o n o r i n d i v i d u a l s , publications, websit es, and t el e v i sion and radio stations for their outstanding achievements in reporting and interpreting public education issues. Awardees, recog- nized at a reception at CTA's State Council of Education meeting in Los Angeles in June, were chosen by an independent panel of media professionals from work nomi- nated by local educators. "is year's winners clearly showed their skills as they told the story of public edu- cation in California," said CTA President Eric Heins. " Th ese journali sts demon- strated their clear understanding of the struggles our schools face, and the suc- cesses. eir insights and compassionate reporting deserve this special recognition." The awards are named in honor of the founder of CTA, who was California's fourth superintendent of public instruction and a crusader for public education. e winners: CTA President Eric Heins, San Ramon Valley EA President Ann Katzburg, the San Francisco Chronicle's C.W. Nevius, United Educators of San Francisco's Lita Blanc. Mona Davidson, president of Desert Sands TA, nominated Kristen Hwang for her series in the Desert Sun. NEWSPAPERS Jill Tucker, San Francisco Chronicle, two awards: for a story on how Bay Area school districts are coping with the teacher short- age due to soaring housing costs; and for a story on several California cities and districts that offer or plan to offer subsidized housing for local educators at below-market rents. See stories at bit.ly/1EOYwAe and bit.ly/29HaUnR. San Francisco Chronicle, for its com- mitment of a team of reporters, editors, photographers and researchers to examine why San Francisco Unified School District (SFUSD) schools are segregated, and how a city "school choice" system played a role. The series was called "Living Together, Learning Apart." Read it at bit.ly/1EXt1yj. Zahira Torres, Los Angeles Times, for con- tinuous coverage of education issues that focused on the efforts of United Teachers Los Angeles to unionize the 27-campus Alliance charter school chain in LAUSD. See a few winning stories at lat.ms/29TUGNv and lat.ms/29BMiMR. Mackenzie Mays, Fresno Bee, for continu- ous coverage of education issues that mostly focused on a federal investigation in Fresno Unified School District concerning district officials' involvement in no-bid construction contracts. Read stories at bit.ly/1k7pIB1 and bit.ly/1QskWbv. Richard Bammer, Vacaville Reporter, two awards: for continuous coverage includ- ing Solano County stories about student achievement, the need to increase PE time in local schools, and the changing nature of the 21st-century classroom; and for a story on a 50 cta.org CTA & you

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