John Merrow is the senior statesman of education journalism. He recently wrote an open letter to the Education Writers Association and declared that this was “the golden age of education reporting.”


Years ago, very few reporters on the education beat wanted to be there. It was a stepping stone to a better assignment. Fred Hechinger was an exception. He was education editor of the New York Times, and he stayed. (Personal note: He was the commencement speaker at my college graduation in 1960, and I subsequently became friends with him and his wife Grace.)


Merrow suggests some under-reported stories: one is the relationship between the Gates Foundation and the U. S. Department of Education.


I would suggest an addition: the ethics of the financial contributions of the Gates Foundation to the media.


Paul Thomas has been writing critically about the flaws of education journalism. It would be interesting to get his take on Merrow’s comments.