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Archive for March, 2010

Some Strategies For Tough Times

March 23, 2010 Leave a comment

Diana Hadley

Correspondence from across the country indicates that most journalism programs are faced with a variety of challenges due to budget cuts whether the programs represent large schools or small, private or public, new or old.

Some programs have been eliminated, and many will experience some form of downsizing with newspaper and yearbook or journalism and publications scheduled into combined classes. In some schools, stipends for work done after school hours will be cut or reduced.

One practical way to avoid some of the slashing is to do the math. Make sure that staff sizes justify a class. If the numbers fall below anything considered a full class, administrators are tempted to combine or eliminate the classes. That means advisers may have to do more active recruiting than they usual. Everyone should remember that just because the guidance department is continuing to schedule students as they have been doesn’t guarantee they won’t make changes in mid-summer or even a week before school begins.

I’m not sure it makes anyone feel any better to know that many are clinging to the same lifeboat as they try to survive, but I’m impressed that most advisers are looking past their own frustrations to do the best thing for students.

Although IHSPA continues to promote media literacy classes for all English classes as additional opportunities for mass media education at all levels, keep in mind that some teachers in other states are already thinking that English classes might be a place where traditional journalism courses can relocate to survive curriculum changes.

Everyone is encouraged to contact me as they find ways to work through this era, and I will share with others.

Additional resources: A strong case is made here for moving high school publications online.

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Symposium Continues To Evolve

March 1, 2010 Leave a comment

Diana Hadley

I hope IHSPA members are planning to celebrate the end of February with a trip to the Indiana Statehouse this Wednesday, March 3, for the fourth annual First Amendment Symposium.  The Indianapolis weather report is First Amendment friendly with just two days to go.

This year’s program has multiple high interest features. IHSPA student journalists will share information about and personal appreciation for the five freedoms guaranteed in the First Amendment.

Since the first symposium in 2007, the event has evolved to include the announcement of the 2010 Indiana Student Journalist of the Year.

This year’s program will honor seven finalists who have led their high school publications programs. The accomplishments of these outstanding high school journalists should convince everyone that IHSPA has an all-star team that could compete with any group in the country.

In addition, Nick Clooney, keynote speaker for the 2009 JEA/NSPA convention in Washington D.C., is this year’s guest speaker. Students who did not have the opportunity to hear Mr. Clooney speak at the national convention will have a special treat, and those who did hear him will have the opportunity to meet him in a smaller venue.

This event requires no registration or fee, but contacting me can provide additional information and a parking pass for a van or bus.

Categories: IHSPA News