Statement of Editorial Independence and Standards
Editorial Projects in Education
Education Week, published by the 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation Editorial Projects in Education (EPE), was founded in 1981 to serve the public interest by providing independent, nonpartisan reporting and analysis on American precollegiate education for school leaders, other educators, policymakers, and members of the general public. Education Week takes no editorial positions and has no advocacy agenda, but is guided by the conviction that the goal of ensuring a high-quality education for all children is advanced by a reliable flow of first-rate news, information, and analysis and a robust yet civil exchange of views on education issues.
In deciding what stories and journalistic enterprise projects to pursue and publish, Education Week is guided by the best judgment of its editors and reporters, informed by sound and widely agreed-upon standards of professional practice. No outside party determines its choices or has a right of review of its editorial content. In selecting opinion content, Education Week editors likewise act independently, with the aim of providing a diverse range of viewpoints in essays and opinion blogs that helps further the national policy discourse.
EPE believes that the diversification of its revenue sources—including subscriptions, other paid content, advertising, and foundation grants—is a guarantor of independent decision-making by Education Week across its print, digital, and video platforms, as well as a wise business strategy that best ensures the long-term sustainability of the organization’s editorial mission and independence.
The core principles of Education Week’s editorial-independence policy and practices include:
Adherence to standards of ethical journalism.Education Week is guided by the Code of Ethics of the Society of Professional Journalists, which encompasses accuracy, fairness, honesty, and courage in reporting; respect for the individuals involved in and affected by reporting; avoidance of favoritism and conflicts of interest; and accountability and transparency in one’s own work. The editor-in-chief, the executive editor, and the managing editor are responsible for upholding clear standards of ethical practice and providing consultation and direction to the supervising editors and their reporters on the application of such standards. An EPE conflict-of-interest policy for its staff members provides additional guidance.
Independence from donors; commitment to disclosure.Foundation grants have always been an important contributor to Education Week’s journalistic excellence, most typically by helping to support coverage in specified topical areas, such as the teaching profession, school leadership, and science learning. Education Week’s editors retain sole control over the content of the resulting articles and other editorial work, and no funder is allowed to have prior review of that content. Education Week appends a credit line (both in print and online) to articles underwritten with foundation grants, disclosing the source of the funding and noting Education Week’s control of the content. Current funders of Education Week coverage are listed online and on the Table of Contents page of each print issue; details on the purposes of the grants and descriptions of the funders’ missions appear on an acknowledgments page that runs regularly in print. In addition, any news article with a substantive mention of an Education Week funder includes a disclosure of the relationship. More information on donor policy is contained in EPE’s guidelines for philanthropic support.
Independence from advertisers; labeling of advertiser/sponsor content.The editors of Education Week and its other print, digital, and video platforms make decisions on editorial coverage without regard to any advantage or disadvantage that might accrue to an advertiser or potential advertiser or sponsor. No advertising salesperson or other representative of EPE may promise (whether expressly or by implication) any news, feature, or other editorial coverage in exchange for an ad or sponsor-content purchase. Education Week takes care in the presentation of advertising and sponsor content so as not to suggest to readers that a relationship exists between those purchases and editorial coverage. Any print or online advertisement that might reasonably be misperceived by readers as editorial content must be labeled as advertising. Other sponsor-provided content is also labeled as such. Advertisements and sponsor content are subject to review for appropriateness of content and presentation before their inclusion in print or online.