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Media: Top Ten Worst (Most Likely) Back To School Stories

image from concordiahanoi.orgEvery year, starting about now and lasting through Labor Day, public relations folks pitch (and editors bite) on back to school stories that are usually pretty badly executed.  

It's not that the topics are so bad but rather that the stories are usually so lightly reported and so overhyped, and often focus on what might happen or what's happening in a few places but not really many of them.

It's like education news in general, only worse than usual:

The usual reporter is away, or wishing she/he were away.

Things are slow particularly.  

No one can seem to resist (including me).

There are pages to fill.  

It's sort of expected -- I mean, how will everyone know that the school year is starting without a back to school story to tell them?

Here are my predictions for some of this year's worst (and most likely) items.  

What am I missing or getting wrong?

10 - School security beefed up in the wake of the New Town shootings

9 - What it's like starting a new school year under federal budget cuts (sequestration) or local budget cuts, or both.

8 - Tablets in the classroom - they're the new laptops!

7 - Gamification will save the world (or at least STEM, or girls' education, or boys')

6 - Transgendered students in class and on sports teams

5 - That new school, program, or initiative that's being launched this year

4 - There are new teachers in the classroom, excited and nervous about being new teachers!

3 - Common Core finally hits the classroom (no fiction allowed!)

2 - That topic or issue that used to be controversial but has sort of fallen off the radar / not turned out to be as dramatic or transformational as anticipated (hyped).

1 - Minor changes from last year (schedule, calendar, uniform requirements, personnel, registration procedures)

Image via Concordia International



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Alexander, we just happened to survey our Milken Educator Network about how educators are spending their summer and readying for the school year. Here's a nifty slideshare that may give reporters some fresh ideas about what to cover for Back-to-School: http://www.slideshare.net/MilkenFamilyFoundation/top-7-ways-educators-are-spending-their-summer-milken-educator-awards.

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