For the fourth time, Mountlake Terrace High School has been selected to receive a First Amendment Press Freedom Award, an honor given by a joint committee of the Journalism Education Association (JEA), the National Scholastic Press Association (NSPA) and the Quill and Scroll International Honorary Society.
The award recognizes public and private high schools that actively support, teach and protect First Amendment rights and responsibilities of students and educators, with an emphasis on student-run media where students make all final decisions on content.
Mountlake Terrace was one of seven high schools selected for the 2014-15 award; the other schools honored were Chantilly (Virginia) High School, Francis Howell North High School (St. Charles, Missouri), Kirkwood (Missouri) High School, Smoky Hill High School (Aurora, Colorado), St. Louis Park (Minnesota) High School), and Whitney High School (Rocklin, California).
The seven award-winning schools will be honored April 16 as part of the opening ceremonies of the JEA/NSPA Spring National High School Journalism Convention in Denver.
“We are proud of each of these schools for supporting their student media as they practice critical life skills like decision making, critical thinking and civic engagement while informing their audiences,” said John Bowen, JEA Scholastic Press Rights Committee Director.
Schools nationwide competed for the award by first answering questionnaires submitted by an adviser and at least one editor. The schools that advanced to the next level were then asked to provide responses from the principal, all publication advisers and student editors to indicate their support of the First Amendment. Semi-finalists were also required to submit samples of their printed policies.
This is the 15th year of the annual award; Mountlake Terrace also was honored as a First Amendment Press Freedom Award winner in 2005-06, 2006-07 and 2013-14.