Mountlake Terrace HS earns 14th First Amendment Press Freedom Award

Mountlake Terrace High School

Mountlake Terrace High School has once again earned a First Amendment Press Freedom Award from the Journalism Education Association, National Scholastic Press Association, and Quill and Scroll International Honorary Society. The award recognizes private and public high schools that actively support, teach and protect First Amendment rights and responsibilities of students and teachers, with an emphasis on student-run media where students make all final decisions of content.

A total of 28 schools nationwide received the award in 2024, the highest ever number of recipients. This is the 14th award for MTHS, and the 11th in a row, longtime MTHS journalism instructor Vince DeMiero said. The only school to receive more awards than Terrace is Kirkwood High School in Missouri. That school has earned 23.

“This is an incredible honor for the MTHS community – not just the student media,” DeMiero said. “This award cannot be earned unless the entire school community supports the principles of the First Amendment. The process is exhaustive and the selection committee asks tough questions. Frankly, I couldn’t be more proud to live and work in this community.”

As in previous years, schools competed for the distinction by first answering questionnaires submitted by an adviser and at least one editor; those who advanced to the next level were asked to provide responses from an administrator, all media advisers and a student editor from each publication. In addition, semifinalists submitted their published district, school and media policies.

One other school in Washington state — Inglemoor High School in Kenmore — earned the award. It’s the first time Inglemoor has been honored.

The 28 winning schools will be recognized April 4 as part of the Spring JEA/NSPA National High School Journalism Convention in Kansas City.


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