October 2020 … Healthy NewsWorks is back in schools this fall—from a distance. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, all programs are being conducted virtually. Students, teachers, and adjunct faculty are meeting by video and sharing documents electronically.
As of early October, programs had started in seven schools with several more expected to start up in coming weeks. Student newspapers will be distributed electronically, and other work will be posted on the Healthy NewsWorks and school websites.
“We are so grateful to be back in the schools and working with students on topics addressing community health needs and interests,” said Marian Uhlman, Healthy NewsWorks executive director. “There’s so much creativity and innovation out there, and we’re looking forward to seeing what the student reporters produce!”
At East Norriton Middle School in Norristown, Pa., teacher Victoria Strickland gave her student reporters a hearty electronic welcome (see above) to their first newspaper meeting of the year. They brainstormed on why it’s important to report accurate facts. Among their answers on Twitter (@enms2inspire): “so you can know what is happening to the world,” “so people don’t get hurt or worse,” and “because you can cause problems and make people panic with false news.”
2020-2021 is the 18th school year Healthy NewsWorks has been working with elementary and middle school students to develop health literacy and awareness. The theme for the year is “Be Alert: The world around you has an impact on your health.” Students will interview experts on topics such as stress, sleep, and freindship, and they will have opportunities to engage in relevant dialogue about COVID-19 and health disparities.