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Media: Journalism Awards, Good And Bad

MJ-stackNewspapers.thumb-mI'm disappointed but not surprised that the LA Times' controversial teacher rating series won an award in this year's EWA writing contest (Contest Winners).  For me, publishing individual teacher ratings was both substantively unwise and professionally unethical.  In contrast I'm extremely happy to see that Helen Zelon and others at City Limits won recognition for their look into the reality behind the Harlem Children's Zone. I'm not opposed to comprehensive social services programs but we need more clear-eyed descriptions of what's really happening. 

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I am all for teachers who are successful receiving credit and acknowledgement, consistent with the Oscars as we feed the people on the world with the biggest egos, yet another helping of praise. We should also acknowledge community outreach programs that are tied to the local schools and those authors and volunteer who have contributed to bettering the educational system. However, I am shocked that teachers personnel files were displayed for all to see, which is a violation on so many levels it is hard to believe that is occurred, and they will most likely get sued. Fire or let these teachers go who do not make the grade, but this type of embarassment we can do without.

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