Photo of Liz Willen

Editor in Chief

Liz Willen

Liz Willen, a longtime education reporter, has been proud to lead an award-winning staff of The Hechinger Report since 2011. She was recently honored for commentary writing by the New York Press Club. Liz got her start in newspapers as feature editor of Northport High School's "The Rag," in Northport, New York and worked at an array of New England newspapers before covering New York City public schools for New York Newsday. She's a graduate of Tufts University and Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism and a board member for the Spencer Education Fellowships at Columbia. Liz is a sought-after moderator at education conferences and events, has been an active New York City public school parent and recipient of the “Above and Beyond,” award by the media company City & State for exemplary leadership. She hates jargon.

Recent Stories

Michael Bloomberg unveils ‘progressive’ higher education plan

Free college and a call for eliminating legacy admissions stand apart from his K-12 legacy

After ‘Varsity Blues’ scandal, lots of talk about overhauling college admissions. Will there be action?

Gathering at USC dreams big, but many poor students will still be left behind

“Canyon Dreams”

How one Navajo Nation high school is trying to help students see a future that includes college

In a new book on "rez ball," columnist Michael Powell explores the lives of Navajo high schoolers on and off the court

Departure of ‘Fame’ high school principal is victory for arts education and student power

Fight underscores how principals can make or break school culture and why they can be difficult to remove

After all the fuss about getting in, how do poor students survive on elite campuses?

A new book details obstacles, from encountering closed cafeterias to cleaning clogged toilets

High school students from Jackson Public Schools gather to discuss ways to improve district schools at Jackson Convention Complex in Mississippi last week.

Report outlines long road ahead for Jackson Public Schools

Improving services to students with disabilities, retaining teachers, top goals for district

New York City Schools Chancellor Harold Levy talks on the phone in his office in downtown Brooklyn, N.Y., Thursday, May 11, 2000. Levy, head of the country's largest school system, is pushing music and poetry in a system plagued with rats, guns and crumbling school buildings.

Remembering former NYC Schools Chancellor Harold Levy: A champion for children and a real mensch

Levy did many things in life, but most loved being chancellor

Clarissa Santana is a mother of three who is frustrated when she returns to college at the University of Akron and learns her credits from a for-profit school don’t transfer. She tells her story in the new documentary “Unlikely.”

Two new documentaries showcase a long and winding road to college

‘Personal Statement,’ and ‘Unlikely’ hit the film festival circuits with stories of real-life obstacles and struggles

As states push for new ways of learning, some kids and parents feel left behind

More school districts embrace big changes, but students in Maine say: ‘We want our grades back!’

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