Teaching media literacy

Posted5/12/2021 1:00 AM

Regarding the April 28 editorial, "Teaching how facts matter," I gave thought to why the government is trying to pass legislation that affects education: Would it be better left in the hands of education experts to decide what is included in the curricula? However, I could not come up with a definitive answer. But if it is passed, why not start in middle school at the very least, or at any age when students are using the internet?

I believe teaching students how to find resources is as important as learning the information they seek. My "credible" sources growing up were limited to encyclopedias, biographies and, later, college library materials; no internet yet.


As a journalist, I commit to finding credible sources for fact-checking. Similarly, I pay attention when watching cable and other news outlets. They often describe two sides of the same coin, thus making it more difficult to discern the "facts" of an issue because both can be right.

Too often, I have seen news media slant or omit the "other" side of a topic, seemingly to fit a certain narrative, thus offering an incomplete picture of said topic. And, then there is a distinction that needs to be made between "misinformation" versus "mistaken" information when verifying the facts and finding the truth.

If this legislation passes, how will "credible source" be defined? I fear it will be decided along party lines, so we will be back to square one.

Jane Charmelo


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