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‘Aspiring Young Journalist’ to be honored by JEA in November

PARKER – Next month Chaparral freshman Breanne Hunter will be on her way to Washington, D.C. to be honored as a rising star in student journalism.

Recently the Journalism Education Association (JEA) named Hunter as the 2014 Aspiring Young Journalist. The award was created to celebrate the amazing work of junior high and middle school students. Only one national winner is named by the JEA every year.

While she is now on the yearbook staff at Chaparral High School, the award recognizes her work at Sierra Middle School. The school has become a journalistic powerhouse, annually competing with high schools around the nation.

READ MORE: Sierra journalism teacher receives national honor

DCSD wins several national student-journalism awards

Despite Sierra’s success, Hunter says she did not think she would win, when her journalism advisor, Jed Palmer, approached her about the award.

 “I kind of just blew it off, but he really pushed me to apply for it.  I put together my portfolio and sent it in,” Hunter said. “One day at lunch he called me. He told me I had won and it came as such a surprise to me. I was just so happy. It really just amazed me.

She credits Palmer with her success.

“He is really an amazing advisor. He gave us all the tools and taught us so much. He was so passionate about it. It is so neat to learn from him,” Hunter said.

One of the goals of the Aspiring Young Journalist Award is to encourage students like Hunter to continue their study of journalism in high school.

Hunter says she certainly plans to continue forward with the yearbook, in part because it makes her feel good and because of the opportunities journalism opens to students.

“I love getting to be on the sidelines at sporting events and take pictures, to learn about other kids and to write stories about them, and to dive deeper and to get the chance to see what other students might not see,” Hunter said.

Hunter will be honored during the JEA/NSPA Fall National High School Journalism Convention, Nov. 6-9, 2014 in Washington, D.C.

 Learn more about the Aspiring Young Journalist Award at

October 7, 2014 | By rmbarber | Category: High School Education, Middle School Education, Schools

District News

Last month, the Board of Education passed a resolution tasking the Superintendent to convene a task force inclusive of members of the general public and staff members. This task force will develop a survey for parents of students eligible for special education services and a survey for staff members who serve students eligible for special education services.

Board members sitting at the dais

CASTLE ROCK - On February 6, the Douglas County School District (DCSD) Board of Education confirmed its commitment to begin the process of seeking approval from voters for additional local funding.

“Our children need a bond and mill levy override (MLO) to be passed in 2018, beyond any doubt,” said DCSD Board of Education President David Ray. “We want to move forward immediately with the necessary processes and collaboration with our community in order to finalize a formal funding package.”

Eleven Douglas County School District schools have been named recipients of the 2017 John Irwin Schools of Excellence Awards. The John Irwin awards are given to schools that demonstrate exceptional academic achievement over time. These schools received an "Exceeds Expectations" rating on the Academic Achievement indicator of the School Performance Frameworks reflecting exceptional performance in Math, English Language Arts, and Science.