A new national beat team has been established at The Associated Press to elevate coverage of issues in education, the news cooperative announced today.
The team will aim to generate more coverage off the news and explore trends affecting students of all ages, using text, video, photos and interactive multi-format storytelling about how trends in education are impacting children and families across America and around the world.
The team is comprised of experienced journalists who consistently break news and produce well-received enterprise on education trends and issues, including recent stories on racial tensions at college campuses following the University of Missouri protests, and changes in high school and middle school sex education to address consent and sexual assault, not just pregnancy and disease.
"The creation of this team signifies the AP’s commitment to this critically important topic," said Sarah Nordgren, director of U.S. news operations. "We are putting some of our top talent in a position to tell the stories of education for the entire suite of AP customers."
The team includes reporters, editors and visual journalists around the United States. They will work with AP bureaus around the globe to develop ambitious stories told in innovative ways for digital and traditional media platforms. The work will include projects with customizable datasets, enabling customers to localize strong national enterprise stories for their audiences.
Members of the team include reporters Lisa Leff in San Francisco and Collin Binkley in Boston, who will focus primarily on higher education. Reporters Christine Armario in Los Angeles and Carolyn Thompson in Buffalo, New York, are dedicated primarily to K-12 issues. Jennifer C. Kerr, a Washington-based reporter, will focus on federal education policy and its impact on schools, teachers and students.
Photo editor Marta Lavandier in Miami and video-first journalist Gillian Flaccus in Orange County, California, will work closely with the team to help incorporate video and photos into its story telling.
The co-leaders of the team are Michael Melia, an administrative correspondent in Hartford, Connecticut, and Carole Feldman, a news editor in Washington.