Archive for November, 2011

IHSPA’s Core Values Stand Test Of Time

November 29, 2011 Leave a comment

Diana Hadley

A reporter on a recent radio broadcast described a situation and asked her interviewee what was wrong with the response from the people involved. With incredulity that is hard to describe on the printed page, the woman said, “Well, it just isn’t true.”

In an era when false statements are just repeated more often and louder until people accept them, it was a refreshing splash of cold water —and it reminded me of the IHSPA core values and how they have met the test of time.

I remember the retreat that focused on creating an IHSPA mission statement. With the help of a facilitator the group struggled with wording that would both reflect the history of IHSPA and lead and inspire members far into the future. Everyone took the task so seriously that shaping the perfect phrase was difficult.

Toward the end of the day the group finally agreed on four words: truth, courage, freedom, and integrity. That’s it. Just four words.

Over a decade later, we still embrace those words. The IHSPA core values test can quickly solve many questions as they help lead us through tough coverage and ethical decisions. Is the story true? Is the overall integrity of the reporting appropriate, fair and balanced? Is the story important enough to test the freedom to print it? And does the staff have the courage to fight the fight the story might require?

Theses were good questions for student journalists in the 20th Century, and they still work for the 21st Century.  In the past year, Indiana’s student journalists have tackled many big stories with an effort that reflects IHSPA core values.  That effort will be featured in the 2012 spring issue of Dow Jones Adviser Update as a collection of education stories from three of our IHSPA high schools.

As issues that affect schools and students continue to evolve, feel welcome to share your school’s coverage with IHSPA.

Categories: IHSPA News

‘American Teacher’ A Tale Worth Considering

November 16, 2011 Leave a comment

Diana Hadley

I know it’s a stretch to think a publication adviser might have an extra two minutes and 42 seconds, but anyone who can find that time is encouraged to visit this link to see a trailer for a new documentary about the teaching profession.

American Teacher tells the story of four teachers who represent both urban and rural schools. Despite their passion to teach they question whether they can stay in the profession under the current circumstances.

Matt Damon, son of a teacher, is the narrator, and Academy Award-winning filmmaker Vanessa Roth is producer and director.

I have had the opportunity to see an advance screening of this 82-minute documentary, and I know most journalism teachers will appreciate it on multiple levels. In addition to the fact it validates the work teachers do, it’s a great example of reporting that uses both statistics and narrative.

Categories: IHSPA News

Post Convention Thoughts: Let Me Know If I Can Help

November 1, 2011 Leave a comment

Diana Hadley

The flurry of October activities leading up to the 2011 convention have evolved into memory links on the IHSPA website. You can visit the photos, multimedia projects and contest results by clicking here. But remember that IHSPA services and activities continue throughout the year.

I continue to help advisers and their staffs plan local/regional activities on a variety of topics. Sometimes I help staffs mediate conflicts with administrators, and sometimes I just share some time with advisers and/or students to discuss common issues in the world of high school journalism.

A true story I shared at the convention advisers meeting:

After a recent on-site workshop that was scheduled at the school for the entire day, the adviser asked the yearbook students if they thought the day was worthwhile.

They said they thought it was. Whew!

Then one of the students asked how much I charged, and the adviser replied, “Nothing.”

To which the student said, “She was really worth nothing.”

I can be worth nothing to others too. Just let me know how I can help.


Categories: IHSPA News