Friday, September 10, 2010

Kansas education officials think journalism is a dead-end job

Posted By on Fri, Sep 10, 2010 at 3:00 PM

click to enlarge Journalism instruction in Kansas is about to go low-tech.
  • Journalism instruction in Kansas is about to go low-tech.

Of the mind that reporters are going the way of blacksmiths, the Kansas Department of Education plans to stop funding journalism courses with vocational-ed dollars.

State officials want the Career and Technical Education fund to emphasize "high-demand, high-skill and high-wage fields," according to a report in The Topeka Capital-Journal. The journalism profession does not fit this criteria, a fact made sadly evident by the most recent round of pack-up-your-AP-sytlebooks at The Kansas City Star.

Student journalists in Kansas will get a chance to finish their stories. Journalism courses will not lose their funding until the end of 2012-'13 schoolyear, when The New York Times will be a subsidiary of ConocoPhillips, and Time magazine will exist only as a 30-day free app.


Schools in Kansas may still offer journalism classes, though the instruction may be in the "all you need is a matchbook and a little moxie" vein. The Career and Technology Fund pays for equipment and software.

Kristy Dekat, a journalism adviser at Topeka West High School, says she needs machines to prepare her students, even if they don't eventually pursue careers as reporters. "When you go into college they expect you to know InDesign and a little bit of Photoshop -- all that sort of stuff," she told the Capital-Journal.

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