The New England Center for Investigative Reporting is excited to announce the winner of the first annual NECIR High School Investigative Journalism Contest: Jaeun Park of West Ranch High School in Stevenson Ranch, California. Park is also the recipient of the National Young Watchdog Reporter Award.
NECIR’s Executive Editor Gary Putka had this to say about Park’s investigative piece:
“Jaeun Park’s ‘Cheater, Cheater’ did a terrific job of documenting both academic cheating and permissive attitudes toward it among students and the adult staff at West Ranch High School, outside Santa Clarita, California. She described specific cheating incidents in specific classes, quoted a teacher by name who rated the problem of cheating a “12” on a scale of one to 10, and amply supported her thesis — that cheating is a commonplace occurrence at West Branch, and worse, that it may not be dealt with any time soon.”
To read Park’s investigation, visit the West Ranch Paw Print website.
Our second-place winner is Dakota Antelman of Hudson High School in Hudson, Massachusetts. Antelman’s look into stress among young students in his school system uncovered educators and parents who were frustrated with increased rigor and difficult state standards for the community’s youngest students.
Third place goes to Jake Brodsky and Kendall McGowan of Brookline High School in Brookline, Massachusetts. Their piece on population growth in Brookline and the resulting challenges for the Brookline school system made great use of infographics to help tell the story.
All three pieces will also be published here in individual posts. Please join us in congratulating these young watchdog reporters on their excellence in investigative reporting.