For immediate release | January 11, 2013

Public libraries chosen to receive $50,000 in training, support to help high school students learn skills to distinguish fact from opinion

CHICAGO – Three public libraries have been selected to receive more than $50,000 in training and support under the News Know-how initiative that helps students, grades 10-12, learn skills that will help them distinguish fact from opinion, check news and information sources and distinguish between propaganda and news.

Students will work with librarians, journalists and news ethicists in the program funded by the Open Society Foundations and administered by the American Library Association’s Office of Intellectual Freedom (OIF).

Thirty-three qualified proposals were reviewed, with three projects chosen as winners.

News Know-how Winning Projects 2013:

  • San Antonio Public Library System
  • San Jose Public Library
  • Iowa Library Services/State Library of Iowa

"I am so eager to begin working with the winning libraries, using the knowledge and expertise we gained in our very successful first year,” said Barbara Jones, director, ALA Office for Intellectual Freedom.

Libraries will receive several benefits, including:

  • more than $50,000 worth of training and support;
  • the opportunity to provide a chance for young people to work and connect with highly respected journalists from around the country and become part of a national network;
  • a stipend to give to each student who completes the project.

Libraries will:

  • Recruit between 12-15 diverse students from the 10th-12th grades from your community who will most benefit from the program;
  • Gain the students’ commitment to attend all of the approximately 25 hours of training during the summer 2013;
  • Have the students commit to complete a team project (due by Thanksgiving 2013) that will require approximately 25 hours of outside work;
  • Participate (the library director/program manager) in a series of on-line trainings and conference calls;
  • Provide training space and logistical support as needed;
  • Commit to the program’s requirements, timelines, and quality standards.

"In today's mass media environment it is critical that students are taught to analyze news coverage," Jones said. "Through the support of the participating libraries, students will be encouraged to practice news literacy by engaging with the media in their communities."

For more information, contact Barbara M. Jones, director of the Office for Intellectual Freedom, American Library Association, 50 E. Huron St., Chicago, Illinois 60611. She can also be reached by phone, (312) 280-4222, or by email, at

You can view the website,

The American Library Association is the oldest and largest library association in the world, with 58,000 members. Its mission is to promote the highest quality library and information services and public access to information.


Steve Zalusky

Manager of Communications

ALA Public Information Office

(312) 280-1546