Student Newspapers, Young Writers Win National Publishing Contest

Guess what? Print is alive and well in U.S. schools. In June, Weekly Reader will honor the lively writing, exciting design, and outstanding community coverage of three student-created newspapers--the winners of the 2009 Student Publishing Contest.

These prize-winning publications, chosen by the editors of Weekly Reader magazines, were selected in three categories. The Blake Beat of James Hubert Blake High School in Silver Spring, Maryland, was named the top high school publication. Two schools in St. Petersburg, Florida, won in the middle and elementary school categories: J.Hop Times of John Hopkins Middle School and Manatee Messenger of Melrose Elementary School.

"These publications offer vivid snapshots of their communities, report on tough stories, and inspire students to action," said Ira Wolfman, Senior Vice President of Editorial for Weekly Reader. "While all three publish good content for the Web, they are superb examples of the ongoing power of print."

The Weekly Reader Student Publishing Contest also cited three students in the individual writing category. Elementary school winner Julianne Hensel of Westminster, Colorado, won for her up-close report titled "Fourth Grader Prepares for Black Belt Testing." In "One Fast Moment," Felice Luu, the middle school winner, gives a gripping first-person account of a car accident. And in "Nova," high school student Maggie Millner movingly weaves together a tribute to her elderly grandmother with a revelation she experienced during a visit to the American Museum of Natural History in New York City.

All winners will be honored at Weekly Reader's student publishing awards ceremony on June 11, 2009, at the JW Marriott in Washington, D.C. The event, part of the Association of Educational Publishers' annual Summit, will feature a keynote address by Candy Crowley, CNN's Senior Political Correspondent. Ms. Crowley will also participate in the presentation of the awards.

Winners receive round-trip transportation to the banquet courtesy of the contest's exclusive airline sponsor, Continental Airlines. Each winner also receives a $500 check (payable to the school or individual) and a plaque. In addition, schools are offered a visit during the following school year by a Weekly Reader editor.

For more information on Weekly Reader's Student Publishing Contest or details about the luncheon, please visit