Alabama teachers will want to take note of this: The Center for Scholastic Journalism at Kent State University released its 2011 Scholastic Journalism Census results yesterday. The findings reveal that among American public high schools, student media presence remains strong, with the exception of schools with large poor and minority student populations.
Additionally, the findings show that online student media numbers are lagging nationwide, and that yearbooks outnumber newspapers as the most common form of student media.
Of the schools surveyed, 96 percent offer some opportunity for student media, leaving only four percent that exclude media from their schools entirely.
Mark Goodman, Center for Scholastic Journalism Knight Chair in Scholastic Journalism, said that the numbers do not indicate how “healthy” journalism is among schools, but do show that media is present in large numbers.
From CSJ’s press release:
- Fifty-four percent of students in schools without any student media qualify for free or a reduced lunch price. In schools with student media offerings, that number is 41 percent.
- Public high schools across the country publish more than 11,000 student newspapers outnumbering daily and weekly U.S. newspapers by more than 3,000 publications.
- More schools have a student yearbook than any other form of student media.
- More than 15,000 public high schools offer a journalism or publications class, and the majority of all student media activities are produced in relationship to a class.
- Only 33 percent of surveyed schools have any form of online student media, and only 8 percent publish materials strictly online.
- The average school with student media has 873 students and a 35 percent minority population. The average school without student media has 222 students with a 56 percent minority population.
Goodman said he hopes the census will act as a baseline, in order to assess changes in student journalism over time.
You can read the full results of the 2011 Scholastic Journalism Census on the CSJ website.