Newspapers: They're for kids, too
Javis Cornett, the audience development director for the North Idaho Newspaper Group, manages the circulation department at The Coeur d'Alene Press where thousands of free newspapers are delivered to 30 schools throughout the area through the Newspapers in Education program. HANNAH NEFF/Press
| October 3, 2021 1:06 AM
A civics project you can support/Editorial, A4
Editor's note: Each day this week, The Press will highlight ways the Newspapers in Education program is being used throughout Kootenai County.
For more than 25 years, the Coeur d’Alene Press has been delivering free newspapers to schools throughout the region.
Today, 30 schools — from private to public and elementary level through college — receive the paper, with thousands of copies being delivered weekly.
How is this possible? Newspapers in Education, an international program started in the 1930s, is a cooperative effort between schools, news organizations and donors to get the newspaper into classrooms as an educational resource.
“If that program wasn't there, students would be missing out on a lot of educational pieces when it comes to their communities specifically,” said Javis Cornett, audience development director for the North Idaho Newspaper Group. “It provides, in essence, a way for the students who don't maybe have access at home to get the news, their local news.”
Cornett said he didn’t realize how much he was missing in terms of local news before starting at The Press in May.
“It’s become more important to me because I have two kids and they’re in school,” Cornett said. “That education is super important to me.”
Cornett said he’s grateful for the opportunity to ensure that teachers and students in the area have access to the local paper.
Throughout the year, The Press accepts donations as well as holds a fundraiser to cover the costs of supplying the schools. This week, which is National Newspaper Week, The Press is raising money to greatly expand its NIE program.
Teachers and schools use the paper in a variety of ways, from using articles for critical discussion to repurposing old copies for paper mache projects.
“It’s going to be different across grades for how the teacher utilizes the newspaper,” Cornett said. “It will contrast to how they utilize it in middle school, as well as in high school, as well as in college.”
Cornett said schools may start out using the Kid Scoop, an educational section of the newspaper for kids that appears on Tuesdays, for the younger grades, and move toward using the paper for more in-depth topics and political discussions in high school and college.
Schools interested in receiving free copies of the paper should contact Cornett at firstname.lastname@example.org or 208-664-0221.
To donate to The Press NIE program, please make out checks to Coeur d'Alene Press, 215 N. Second St., CDA, 83814, and indicate that the donations are for Newspapers in Education.