Founded in 1946, the Florida Scholastic Press Association is comprised of more than 300 student publications, online media teams and broadcast programs throughout the state. The primary aim of this organization is to educate, train and support scholastic journalists and their advisers.
FSPA believes that the responsible exercise of freedom of expression involves adherence to the highest standards of journalism. Students and advisers have an obligation to learn and practice the legal and ethical responsibilities expected of journalists.
FSPA IS …
- An organization that promotes scholastic journalism statewide.
- A support group for students involved in communications, including newspaper, yearbook, magazine, broadcast and online media.
- An organization that supports First Amendment rights of Florida student journalists.
- A network that encourages and aids local groups of advisers, student editors and staff members.
- An educational group that provides information for updating its members in all areas of journalism.
- An organization providing critiques and competition to encourage professional growth.
- A scholastic organization that promotes standards of accuracy, fairness, responsibility and integrity.
- A group for disseminating information regarding current state and local requirements for teacher certification and curriculum.
- A clearinghouse for sharing examples of excellence in scholastic journalism through newsletters, district workshops and the state convention.
- A model in scholastic journalism.
Why should I join?
We are a good group of people with concerns like yours. We care about and believe in the value of scholastic journalism in our youth’s lives. We are committed to teaching the principles of good journalism on a daily basis. We become a stronger community as more advisers join. And why be alone out there in the world where you advise?
Does it have a history?
Yes. And it’s a great history. Dr. Judy Robinson, a former FSPA executive director, studied the Florida Scholastic Press Association and wrote her thesis on it. For the organization’s 50th Anniversary the Tampa Tribune helped publish the history called “Scholastic Journalism in the Sunshine State: The history of the Florida Scholastic Press Association 1946 – 1996.” An excerpt is available as a downloadable .pdf file at the Florida Journalism History Project.
Now the organization is 61 years old. If you want to hear more stories, ask the director. Of course she may try to sell you a copy of the book for $20, too. But it would be money well spent.
In 1998 the organization’s constitution was revised and called bylaws to be in compliance with the laws in the state of Florida. You can download and read the bylaws here. (pdf)