2013 Single-Topic News or Feature for Print/Online (Small Staff) Second Prize: Alia Wong and PF Bentley

Alia Wong (Reporter) and PF Bentley Photographer) | Honolulu Civil Beat

“Learning Hilo (TIE)”

Judges’ Comments

“With beautifully written prose, Alia Wong captures what life is like in Hilo schools serving some of Hawaii’s poorest children. Her series provides vivid detail of the innovations being used in each of the schools profiled and helps the reader understand why the measures of success at these schools might be different than elsewhere. The series provides good look at how charter schools can be effective when traditional ones fail.”

“Alia Wong has produced an exquisite portrait of four charter schools in the Hilo area of Hawaii. Each portion of this series rewarded readers with gems of detail – used to good effect to highlight a larger concept. Wong’s ability to weave diverse elements and approaches to education into this guided tour of truly remarkable schools left this reader wishing the series had even more chapters. Except for a few endings that seemed a bit contrived, these pieces were compelling and insightful.”