Photo by: Aimee Parsons

February 12, 2020 / News

Lerner from Stoneman Douglas named Special Recognition as part of CSPA Teacher of the Year honors

Written by Evan Blackwell, CJE

Congratulations to Sarah Lerner, CJE, the yearbook adviser at Walsworth customer Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. Lerner was named a Special Recognition Adviser on Tuesday when the Columbia Scholastic Press Association (CSPA) announced its 2020 National High School Journalism Teacher of the Year winners.

Erinn Harris, journalism teacher and adviser of student media at Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology in Alexandria, Virginia, was named the 2020 National High School Journalism Teacher of the Year.

Lerner has been teaching since 2002 and advising since 2006. Under her guidance, the Aerie yearbook has won three CSPA Crown awards. Lerner is also the author of Parkland Speaks: Survivors from Marjory Stoneman Douglas Share Their Stories, a book chronicling the tragic shooting that took place at Marjory Stoneman Douglas in February 2018.

Lerner and some of her yearbook students appeared on the Yearbook Chat with Jim podcast last year (pictured above) to talk about the book and how it was pieced together.

Other teachers to be named as Special Recognition included:

  • Delbert Ellerton, Grady High School, Atlanta, Georgia
  • Anne Hayman, Arlington High School, Granite Falls, Washington
  • Alana Van Der Sluys, Kinnelon High School, Kinnelon, New Jersey

In addition, four were named as Distinguished Advisers, including:

  • J.D. Garber, Salina High School, Salina, Kansas
  • Kim Isbell, Humboldt High School, Humboldt, Kansas
  • Kristin Taylor, The Archer School for Girls, Los Angeles, California
  • Carolyn Wagner, Lake Zurich High School, Lake Zurich, Illinois

The National High School Journalism Teacher of the Year Awards program is managed by the CSPA and co-sponsored by Dow Jones News Fund, with additional support from the Poynter Institute for Media Studies and The Wall Street Journal.

The awards will be presented at CSPA’s annual Spring Convention in New York on March 19.

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Evan Blackwell, CJE

Evan Blackwell, CJE, is the Marketing Automation Supervisor for Walsworth. He's been a writer, editor and web content specialist for Walsworth for the past 15+ years, and is the author of the Yearbook Suite's "The Art of the Interview" unit. Prior to joining Walsworth, Blackwell spent five years as an award-winning newspaper and magazine journalist. He holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Kansas.