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The Feather misses Pacemaker nod

The Feather misses Pacemaker nod
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After judging 166 online high school newspapers during the spring semester, a team of media experts at the Star Tribune chose 36 finalists for the NSPA Online Pacemaker Award.

After judging 166 online high school newspapers during the spring semester, a team of media experts at the Star Tribune chose 36 as finalists for the National Scholastic Press Association’s (NSPA) Online Pacemaker Award. The NSPA announced the finalists on its blog, March 11.

For the first time since 2005, The Feather was not among the Online Pacemaker finalists.

“Although I am disappointed that we were not named an Online Pacemaker finalist this year, I am very pleased with our accomplishments and progress,” editor-in-chief Austin Ward, ’11, said. “In the next few weeks, we will look back on our work and compare ourselves to the winning newspapers in order to see where we lack and how we can improve.”

This year’s contenders were separated into two divisions based on school size — fewer than 1500 enrollment and 1500 or greater — with 18 finalists in each group.

The Online Pacemaker finalists from California include The Foothill Dragon Press of Foothill Technology High School, Ventura; El Estoque Online of Monta Vista High School, Cupertino; The Blue Devil HUB of Davis Senior High School, Davis; The Talon of Los Altos High School, Los Altos; The Paly Voice of Palo Alto High School, Palo Alto; and TheLowell.org of Lowell High School, San Francisco.

The finalists and winners will be recognized formally at the NSPA/Journalism Education Association (JEA) National High School Journalism Convention in Anaheim, April 16. The staff of The Feather will attend the convention, where adviser Greg Stobbe and Ward will be presenting two sessions.

Besides the Pacemaker contest, The Feather entered and was recognized as a finalist for the Columbia Scholastic Press Association’s (CSPA) Online Crown Award. Stobbe and Ward, among others, will attend the 87th annual CSPA Spring National Convention in New York City, March 16-18, to accept either a Silver or Gold Crown, as well as to present two sessions.

The Feather won an Online Pacemaker in 2006, 2008 and 2010. The newspaper also received a Silver Crown in 2009 and a Gold Crown in 2010. In the NSPA Web Site Critique, The Feather was named All-American, the highest level of recognition, with Four Marks of Distinction, in October of 2010.

For more information, read the NSPA’s press release. For past coverage of journalism awards, read the Feb. 19 article, Feather awarded third Online Crown, or the Dec. 17, 2010 article, All-American distinction lauds Feather.

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