2015 Single-Topic News or Feature for Print/Online (Small Staff) Finalist: Eli Hager

Eli Hager | The Marshall Project

“When School Feels Like Jail”

Isolation rooms and paddling: Some schools in the South still employ anachronistic discipline practices to keep students in line.

When School Feels Like Jail

Comments from the Judges:

“Very well done with a lot of great examples of an outmoded and defeating discipline system. This brought to life a lot of the ways kids are literally beaten down. It mixed strong research, expert discussion and great sense of personality and local color in the reporting.”

“Outstanding work. This writer takes a difficult topic and goes deep, talking to everyone from students to teachers to parents. It is the voice he gives to students that is truly impressive. The story goes way beyond describing a problem toward explaining why it’s happening and seeking solutions. Excellent job.”