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The News Literacy Project’s Banner Year

The News Literacy Project had a string of remarkable successes in 2010.

In only its third year, NLP greatly expanded the number of partner schools, teachers and students that it is reaching; had its students showcased at a national event at the Newseum and on PBS.org; held a series of highly successful public events, and raised its profile both through coverage of the project in other news media and through reports prepared by NLP participants that were published on websites and in newspapers and magazines.

It also added four distinguished members to its board, including Gwen Ifill of “Washington Week” and “PBS NewsHour.”As 2010 ends, NLP is launching a pilot with the Chicago Public Library’s acclaimed YOUmedia program and planning its participation in a national news literacy conference at Stony Brook University on Long Island in March. The project also expects to engage more than 100 journalists in its classroom, extended-day and after-school programs this school year.Among the project’s accomplishments in 2010:Educational Program2009-2010 school year:• We worked with 17 teachers in seven schools in New York City, Chicago and Bethesda, Md., to reach about 1,200 students from the 6th to the 12th grades.• We worked with an after-school program in New York (Citizen Schools) and extended-day and after-school programs in Chicago.• We engaged about 75 journalists, some multiple times, to work with students.• We completed our first independent assessment, which documented positive impact with students in multiple areas and favorable responses from teachers and journalists.2010-2011 school year:• We expect to work with at least 25 teachers in 12 schools in New York, Chicago and Bethesda to reach more than 1,700 students from the 6th to the 12th grades. We will again work in the classroom and in extended-day and after-school programs.• We expect to engage more than 100 journalists in NLP programs and events.• We revised, updated and improved our Classroom Guide, primers and assessment materials following a three-day staff retreat in August.• We launched a pilot with the Chicago Public Library’s YOUmedia program.• NLP’s work will be showcased at a national news literacy conference at Stony Brook University in March.

Special Accomplishments2009-2010 school year:• Six students from Walt Whitman High School appeared on a panel on news literacy at a national event, sponsored by Ashoka, at the Newseum in April.• Middle school students in Chicago produced an audio report, “Peer Pressure,” in May. It is available on the PBS.org website, along with profiles of two of the students.• Walt Whitman student Lucy Chen wrote an article that appeared in the June edition of Nieman Reports, published by Harvard University.• Summer: We held our first staff retreat in Bethesda during three days in August.2010-2011 school year:• We produced a new video, “Reflections on the News Literacy Project.”• NLP fellows gave the keynote speech and presented three workshops at the Baruch College news literacy summit in New York in November.• The Newseum shot video footage of our journalists at Baruch and at Whitman in November and interviewed two of our students and Alan Miller for a report to be posted on the Newseum’s website.

Special EventsJanuary: We held a party for about 50 teachers, journalists and supporters in Bethesda.May: We produced a showcase event with two middle schools in Chicago.September: Fall Forum: “The Future of Journalism in the Digital Age” in BethesdaOctober: Fall Forum: “Race and Politics in the Age of Obama”Cultivation breakfast with columnist Gail Collins at The New York TimesNovember: Fall Forum: “Briefing the Press: Democratic and Republican White House Press Secretaries Compare Notes”