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EWA Webinar: Back to School Dave Breitenstein (The News-Press; Fort Myers, Fla.) Milestone Moments of Life ∙ Birth ∙ First day of kindergarten ∙ Senior.

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Presentation on theme: "EWA Webinar: Back to School Dave Breitenstein (The News-Press; Fort Myers, Fla.) Milestone Moments of Life ∙ Birth ∙ First day of kindergarten ∙ Senior."— Presentation transcript:

1 EWA Webinar: Back to School Dave Breitenstein (The News-Press; Fort Myers, Fla.) Milestone Moments of Life ∙ Birth ∙ First day of kindergarten ∙ Senior prom ∙ High school graduation ∙ Move-in day at college ∙ Wedding (4 of 6 are education-related)

2 K-12: Pre-Back to School Coverage What’s new this year? ∙ Demographics ∙ Academic programs ∙ School facilities ∙ Teachers ∙ Lunch items ∙ State requirements ∙ Dress codes/uniforms ∙ Attendance boundary changes

3 K-12: Last Year’s Problems, This Year’s Stories What went wrong last year? ∙ Busing woes ∙ Security (fights, drugs) ∙ Teacher misconduct ∙ Financial audits ∙ Testing protocol

4 K-12: This year’s trends, this year’s stories Hot topics in education ∙ Testing: How many standardized tests will students take this year? ∙ Homework: What is the standard number of minutes of homework each night? ∙ Finances: How is money being spent to improve education? What non-essential items are in the budget, and why? ∙ Charter schools: Are they better, or just different? ∙ Parental involvement: Why are open house nights often the last time teachers see some parents?

5 Higher Ed: Look at Incoming Freshmen Sobering Stats ∙ One in four freshmen won’t return as sophomores ∙ Half will not graduate ∙ The average student graduates with $25,250 debt Then use that data for a story on programs the college is launching to ensure academic success: freshmen-only residence halls, hiring extra tutors, scholarships for first-time college students or endowment strength.

6 Higher Ed: Freshmen Roundup Move-in day is a goldmine for finding that perfect freshman to tell a story ∙ From a rural area (look at license plates) ∙ Flying solo (no friends on campus) ∙ Has not selected a major ∙ Never left home before ∙ First-generation student ∙ Low-income student attending a pricey college

7 Higher Ed: Sketch It Use a statistic, sketch a graphic and build a story Example: The annual back-to-school textbook rush ∙ Step 1: Identify an interesting statistic – where does textbook money go? ∙ Step 2: Sketch a visual ∙ Step 3: Hit the bookstore for interviews and photos ∙ Step 4: Write a back-to-school story about textbook costs

8 facebook.com/DaveBreitenstein twitter.com/D_Breitenstein Dave Breitenstein Higher Education Reporter The News-Press 2442 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. Fort Myers, FL 33901 (239) 335-0406 dbreitenstein@news-press.com


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