Will depart as Dean of Stony Brook University’s School of Journalism to focus exclusively on advancing the Center’s critical educational mission
STONY BROOK, N.Y., December 13, 2018 – The Founding Dean of Stony Brook University’s School of Journalism, Howard Schneider, will depart his role at the start of 2019 to fully focus on bringing the school’s innovative News Literacy curriculum to public schools in New York and across the country. Schneider founded the Center for News Literacy at Stony Brook University in 2006 and serves as its Executive Director.
“The spread of false and misleading news is a national public health emergency that threatens the foundation of a society built on shared knowledge and values,” said Schneider. “Now is the time to act to ensure that our children grow up with the ability to separate truth from falsehood.”
The Center for News Literacy has developed a proven university-level curriculum over the past decade that arms students with the critical thinking skills necessary to judge the reliability of news reports and sources. This curriculum has been used to educate more than 17,000 undergraduates at several dozen U.S. universities and in 10 countries, and is now ready to be adapted and adopted by every classroom in America.
“Many people want a ‘quick fix’ to the problem of ‘fake news,’ something as simple as the tech companies tweaking their algorithms,” said Schneider. “But the real solution requires transformative change, the realization that every student in America needs to be inoculated with a dose of News Literacy before they leave middle school.”
Schneider’s immediate plans include building on the success of the existing pilot News Literacy programs at select high schools on Long Island and by working on a proposal to introduce the curriculum into three New York City middle schools in conjunction with the City University of New York School of Education. Several additional Long Island school districts have expressed interest in the initiative. Schneider also intends to expand the Center’s teacher training programs.
“Our success at the university level has created the foundation for us to adapt the curriculum for younger students, “Schneider said. “No school system in the nation has yet integrated News Literacy education into the required curriculum for all students. We hope to change that.”
Prior to founding the School of Journalism at Stony Brook, Schneider for more than 35 years was a reporter and editor at Newsday. For 18 of those years, he was managing editor and then editor. Under his tenure, the newspaper won eight Pulitzer Prizes. Schneider was the recipient in 2012 of the DeWitt Reddick Award for Public Communications and Journalism Education granted by the University of Texas. In 2003, he was the recipient of the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism Alumnus Award (M.S. ’67). He has been a member of the Pulitzer Prize judging panel three times. He earned his B.A. at Syracuse University in Journalism and Psychology (’66).
Stony Brook University has named Dr. Laura Lindenfeld, the Executive Director of the Alan Alda Center for Communicating Science, as the journalism school’s Interim Dean to replace Schneider.
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