Educators in Bolivia, the United States and Nigeria have won the Scott C. Schurz Press Freedom Teacher Award for excellence in teaching their students about why societies need good journalism and about the range of threats journalists confront.

“Too often and in too many countries news/media literacy instruction skips the part about the need for journalism and the high personal price some pay to do that job,” said Dr. Aralynn Abare McMane, the director of Global Youth & News Media Prize, which established the Schurz award as a part of the news/media literacy category.

“This year, we wanted to work toward correcting that by recognizing those on the front line of education who make sure those lessons are taught well. What better day than International Day of Democracy, 15 September, to announce such outstanding Press Freedom Teachers, and who better than Scott Schurz as the award’s namesake?”

An international jury of 19 experts in journalism, media literacy and press freedom chose three laureates for the new award: Marisabel Bellido Terán of Bolivia for a gold level award and Janis Schachter of the United States for a silver level award with a special commendation going to Olawale (Ibrahim) Gbenusola of Nigeria.

Details about the teachers and there work can be found here:

These prizes honor the late Scott C.Schurz (1936 – 2021), a leader in local U.S. journalism and a global champion of press freedom and of the need to introduce youth to how good reporting is done.Partners in the award are News Decoder, WAN-IFRA Media Freedom, the Interamerican Press Association (IAPA) and Schurz Communications.

“Scott Schurz was a legendary presence in our organization over so many years,” said Andrew Heslop, WAN-IFRA media freedom executive director. “His dedication to the cause of press freedom created beacon of light that helped guide peers and colleagues.”

“We’re confident that through this award the commitment he inspired will influence the next generation of press freedom advocates.”

Ricardo Trotti, executive director at IAPA, said: “We will always be proud in the Inter American Press Association to enhance the legacy we inherit from Scott Schurz, a great man and unwavering fighter for press freedom throughout the world.”
Global Youth & News Media is a nonprofit based in France that promotes media literacy through a journalistic prism, amplifies youth reporting and honors news media that serve the young.

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