Here, find a brief overview of implications for fostering more insightful education journalism from our project Teachers in the News. For implications in their entirety, please visit the main project site at teachersinthenews.org.
Teachers and journalists help people understand and engage with the world. Yet both teachers and journalists are often under-resourced, underpaid, disrespected, and overworked. Furthermore, during the period covered by this research (2009 to 2020), news consumption habits, technologies, advertising revenues, and employment in traditional newsrooms all saw changes that affected news organizations’ capacities, especially their capacity to cover local news.
Nonetheless, journalism remains crucial to identifying the challenges facing K-12 education, exploring solutions to those challenges, and holding decision-makers accountable. Reporters, editors, news organizations, business leaders, philanthropic funders, and communications professionals all have roles to play in helping education journalism fulfill those vital functions. To support education journalism, Public Agenda has pinpointed methods that the various institutions and actors in the media ecosystem can use to report on K-12 education:
- Create ways for journalists to easily access teachers so that they can more frequently include their voices in education coverage.
- Portray teachers as experts, not as problems to be solved.
- Include teachers’ perspectives in articles about student poverty and other nonacademic factors that affect learning.
- Provide robust coverage of teacher shortages and lack of diversity in the teaching profession.
- Provide robust coverage of budgets, buildings, and classroom resources.
- Consider what the declining coverage of evaluation means for the future of education and of education journalism.
- Reflect on how education journalism can cover the COVID-19 pandemic as it continues to evolve.