More than half of students from low‑income households
$0 still needed
All The News That's Fit To...Hear?
My students need 5 digital voice recorders to record interviews and events in their jobs as reporters for the school newspaper.
My student reporters are keeping the first amendment alive in our school community. They are on the newspaper staff at our city's largest high school, which serves a diverse community of students.
Almost 50% of our students qualify for free and reduced lunch. We have a large population of English language learners, and our school hosts an All Nations program for Native American students.
The student reporters, photojournalists, and editors in my newspaper class produce a genuinely student-run monthly newspaper for this large, varied community. I am their adviser and teacher, but they make decisions about what news to cover, how to cover it, and how to organize their work. Many of them tell me that it is the closest to a real-world work experience they get in high school.
I am making this request on behalf of the students because they are concerned about two things: the accuracy and richness of their reporting and the need for a multi-media website for the paper.
Currently, the only recording equipment available for student reporters to use during interviews is a 10-pound tabletop cassette recorder from the early 1980's. This is hardly practical for students, and most of them no longer have the equipment they need to listen to the tapes this recorder creates.
We practice note-taking skills, but even the best note-takers miss some of the most effective direct quotes. Also, I have an increasing number of English language learners on staff who sometimes struggle to listen and write quickly enough during interviews or events. These students are skilled reporters but need better tools.
The digital voice recorders I am requesting will help the students keep more accurate records of their interviews with students, staff and community members. The recorders will allow them to review their interviews to get the best information possible into their articles. And having the recordings will help hold them accountable when there are complaints from sources about being misquoted.
The students have a goal of creating a website for our newspaper by next school year. The digital voice recorders will help us create podcasts and other audio files for the site. These podcasts might be stand-alone stories or they could supplement articles that have appeared in the paper. For instance, a recent article we published about a wrestler who broke a 60-year-old citywide record might be supplemented online with a podcast interview with that wrestler.
Your donation will help my students more effectively run their own newspaper, which has become an important public forum for student expression in our community.
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