Maureen Downey

Education columnist

Maureen Downey is a longtime reporter for the AJC where she has written editorials and opinion pieces about local, state and federal education policy for 19 years. She’s also taught college classes in mass communications and journalism.However, she’s learned more about schools from having four children in them. Her children range in age from 24 to 14, so she’s now dealing with elementary school and college. Her own education includes an undergraduate degree from the University of Delaware and a master’s degree from Columbia University. She has worked for newspapers in New Jersey and Florida and has covered many school boards. She has won many editorial writing awards, including a National Headliner award. She was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for her AJC editorials on the Genarlow Wilson case. Read Maureen Downey's Get Schooled blog

Latest from Maureen Downey

AJC top teacher Jim Reason of Gwinnett buoys students in pool and classroom
 The AJC created the Celebrating Teachers Awards this year to showcase remarkable Georgia educators. More than 375 teachers
            were nominated in the inaugural round of the awards, and a panel of education professors chose 10 winners. These teachers have a trait in common: They go above and beyond for their students and their schools...

Posted: a minute ago

The AJC created the Celebrating Teachers Awards this year to showcase remarkable Georgia educators. More than 375 teachers were nominated in the inaugural round of the awards, and a panel of education professors chose 10 winners. These teachers have a trait in common: They go above and beyond for their students and their schools...
AJC top teacher Kari Parlier of Gwinnett roots for students in and out of classroom
 The AJC created the Celebrating Teachers Awards this year to showcase remarkable Georgia educators. More than 375 teachers
            were nominated in the inaugural round of the awards, and a panel of education professors chose 10 winners. These teachers have a trait in common: They go above and beyond for their students and their schools...

Posted: 9 hours ago

The AJC created the Celebrating Teachers Awards this year to showcase remarkable Georgia educators. More than 375 teachers were nominated in the inaugural round of the awards, and a panel of education professors chose 10 winners. These teachers have a trait in common: They go above and beyond for their students and their schools...
AJC top teacher Tiffany Bunch inspires fellow DeKalb educators
 The AJC created the Celebrating Teachers Awards this year to showcase remarkable Georgia educators. More than 375 teachers
            were nominated in the inaugural round of the awards, and a panel of education professors chose 10 winners. These teachers share a critical trait: They go above and beyond for their students and their schools...

Posted: 21 hours ago

The AJC created the Celebrating Teachers Awards this year to showcase remarkable Georgia educators. More than 375 teachers were nominated in the inaugural round of the awards, and a panel of education professors chose 10 winners. These teachers share a critical trait: They go above and beyond for their students and their schools...
AJC top teacher Farhat Ahmad gives Fulton students voice and hope
 The AJC created the Celebrating Teachers Awards this year to showcase remarkable Georgia educators. More than 375 teachers
            were nominated in the inaugural round of the awards, and a panel of education professors chose 10 winners. These teachers have a trait in common: They go above and beyond for their students and their schools...

Posted: a day ago

The AJC created the Celebrating Teachers Awards this year to showcase remarkable Georgia educators. More than 375 teachers were nominated in the inaugural round of the awards, and a panel of education professors chose 10 winners. These teachers have a trait in common: They go above and beyond for their students and their schools...
AJC top teacher Angela Gray of Gwinnett created ‘Sunday Socials’ in the park to engage kids
 The AJC created the Celebrating Teachers Awards this year to showcase remarkable Georgia educators. More than 375 teachers
            were nominated in the inaugural round of the awards, and a panel of education professors chose 10 winners. These teachers share a common trait: They go above and beyond for their students and their schools...

Posted: 2 days ago

The AJC created the Celebrating Teachers Awards this year to showcase remarkable Georgia educators. More than 375 teachers were nominated in the inaugural round of the awards, and a panel of education professors chose 10 winners. These teachers share a common trait: They go above and beyond for their students and their schools...
Who got into University of Georgia today?
 From UGA: Nearly 15,000 students applied for early action admission to the University of Georgia’s Class of 2022, bringing record academic
            qualifications to the birthplace of public higher education. This year more than 8,000 students are being offered early action admission to UGA, and their average GPA of 4.11 reflects...

Posted: 4 days ago

From UGA: Nearly 15,000 students applied for early action admission to the University of Georgia’s Class of 2022, bringing record academic qualifications to the birthplace of public higher education. This year more than 8,000 students are being offered early action admission to UGA, and their average GPA of 4.11 reflects...
Opinion: Our public schools are better than most Georgians realize
 Matt Cardoza is the communications director for the 
            Georgia Partnership for Excellence in Education and former spokesman for the state 
            Department of Education where he got to visit schools across Georgia on a regular basis. In this piece, Cardoza says Georgia schools are unfairly labeled as failing. He cites...

Posted: 5 days ago

Matt Cardoza is the communications director for the  Georgia Partnership for Excellence in Education and former spokesman for the state Department of Education where he got to visit schools across Georgia on a regular basis. In this piece, Cardoza says Georgia schools are unfairly labeled as failing. He cites...
Was DeKalb board member wrong to allow son to wear insulting T-shirt to CNN tour?
 DeKalb elected officials Nancy and Stan Jester live public lives and often take positions that earn them criticism in their
            county. She’s a county commissioner; he is a school board member. I assume a thick skin runs in their family, given what they allowed their seventh grader to wear on a school field trip to
        ...

Posted: 5 days ago

DeKalb elected officials Nancy and Stan Jester live public lives and often take positions that earn them criticism in their county. She’s a county commissioner; he is a school board member. I assume a thick skin runs in their family, given what they allowed their seventh grader to wear on a school field trip to ...
Opinion: Only wealthy can afford grad school under House tax plan up for vote today
 Jenny C. Bledsoe is a fifth-year Ph.D. candidate in English at Emory University, specializing in medieval literature. She
            was featured in a 
            New York Times story last week that examined how the GOP House tax plan would impact a range of American students. In this essay, Bledsoe focuses on the
            change that...

Posted: 5 days ago

Jenny C. Bledsoe is a fifth-year Ph.D. candidate in English at Emory University, specializing in medieval literature. She was featured in a New York Times story last week that examined how the GOP House tax plan would impact a range of American students. In this essay, Bledsoe focuses on the change that...
Opinion: School counselors learn to prepare students for all careers
 Lee Edmondson Grimes is an associate professor of counseling at Valdosta State University. In this piece, she writes about the expanding role
            of school counselors in career exploration and development. Grimes notes that school counselors are now trained in advising students about all careers, including technical, trade, apprenticeships...

Posted: 7 days ago

Lee Edmondson Grimes is an associate professor of counseling at Valdosta State University. In this piece, she writes about the expanding role of school counselors in career exploration and development. Grimes notes that school counselors are now trained in advising students about all careers, including technical, trade, apprenticeships...
Opinion: I opposed school choice until I had a child who needed it
 Attorney Nina Hickson is the former ethics officer for the city of Atlanta. Hickson had a challenging experience finding a
            school that could meet the needs of her daughter who is dyslexic. In this piece, Hickson explains her conversion from opponent
            of choice to supporter. By Nina Hickson While it is generally...

Posted: 8 days ago

Attorney Nina Hickson is the former ethics officer for the city of Atlanta. Hickson had a challenging experience finding a school that could meet the needs of her daughter who is dyslexic. In this piece, Hickson explains her conversion from opponent of choice to supporter. By Nina Hickson While it is generally...