Ahrash Bissell and I were in Sacramento for the JEANC conference this past weekend (Journalism Education Association of Northern California). It was great to see so many of the Student Journalism 2.0 students at the conference, and to see the Palo Alto and Monta Vista High advisors so hard at work helping to make student journalism education more effective in California.
I was impressed by how knowledgeable the students were of their rights and the rights of their publications under state and federal law. Some of them sounded like burgeoning lawyers! Palo Alto advisor Ellen Austin remarked that this is largely out of necessity because of frequent battles with school and district administrators, and that its a great learning experience for students to exercise their rights in a real world situation.
Ahrash and I presented Creative Commons licenses and the Student Journalism 2.0 project to a large group of students and advisors. For a lot of them, Creative Commons and copyright was unfamiliar ground, but the concepts and issues became immediately apparent. Advisors and students grappled with issues of rights, student ownership of work, and how CC licenses can help push student work into the larger media ecosystem.
We wrapped up the presentations with a request that interested advisors and students add the SJournalism Twitter account or fan the Facebook page to help show students the power of a connected world, both for their own journalistic goals and for the education process.