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Joe Hong

Education Reporter

Photo of Joe Hong

Joe Hong has spent the past two years covering education for national and local publications. Most recently, he covered three school districts for The Desert Sun in Palm Springs. He has written about school finance, negligence in special education, and school board misconduct. Previously, he covered equity issues and historically black colleges and universities for Diverse: Issues in Higher Education magazine based in Fairfax, Virginia.

Before a career in journalism, he was pursuing a doctorate in comparative literature at Rutgers University. He pivoted to journalism in 2016 and earned a master's degree from Columbia Journalism School in 2017, specializing in investigative reporting. In September 2019, he completed The Data Institute, a two-week workshop for journalists of color taught by ProPublica in collaboration with the Ida B. Wells Society.

Recent Stories by Joe Hong

High school valedictorians Jorge Nuñez, Carlos ...

No Speeches In Front Of Big Crowds, These High School Valedictorians Still Have Something To Say

May 27
By Joe Hong

The coronavirus pandemic has laid waste to end-of-the-year events for high school seniors. So valedictorians will have to impart their wisdom online.

The Sweetwater Union High School District centr...

Sweetwater School District Librarians’ Jobs Are On The Line When Students Need Them Most

May 20
By Joe Hong

A spokesman for the Sweetwater Union High School District said the administration is still finalizing any eliminations. The teachers union president says it’s possible to save some librarians.

San Diego City College is pictured in this phot...

Community Colleges Getting Less Funding But Likely More Students In Coming Year

May 19
By Joe Hong

The revised budget Gov. Gavin Newsom unveiled last week includes $1 billion in funding cuts to the state community college system due to the coronavirus pandemic. Meanwhile, colleges are expecting an influx of newly unemployed students.

The outside of the San Diego Unified School Dis...

With Grim Projections In Revised State Budget, Local School Officials Call For Federal Help

May 15
By Joe Hong

Gov. Gavin Newsom’s revised budget projects nearly $19 billion in cuts to education funding. San Diego Unified leaders say their plan for reopening hinges on more federal stimulus money.

A headline in the San Diego State University Da...

SDSU Students Deflated By News Of An Online-Only Fall Semester

May 14
By Joe Hong

Fearing a second wave of the pandemic, the CSU system made the announcement Tuesday to keep nearly all classes virtual in the fall.

The San Diego Unified School District Board of ...

San Diego’s High School Seniors Consider Alternative Ways To Celebrate Graduations And Proms

May 13
By Joe Hong

Student leaders on Tuesday proposed postponing the ceremonies to July and August.

The UC San Diego School of Medicine building sh...

Even With Mass Coronavirus Testing, UC San Diego Officials Are Cautious About Fall Opening

May 7
By Joe Hong

The university this week claimed to be the first in the nation to announce a plan to test all students, teachers and staff. But the expert in charge of the program emphasized that a return to normal campus life is still a long ways off.

The University Village area of the University o...

College-Bound Students Jumped For Joy When They Got In. Now They’re Weighing Grim Options

May 1
By Joe Hong

With the pandemic making online learning a distinct possibility for colleges and universities this fall, some students might defer admission to their dream schools.

The San Diego Unified School District headquart...

As State Mulls Early Start To New School Year, Local Districts Struggle To Balance Budgets

April 30
By Joe Hong

Gov. Gavin Newsom said the new school year might have to start as early as July because of the pandemic. Meanwhile, San Diego Unified is facing immediate budget cuts.

Frank Granda in a video conference interview in...

As Formal Distance Learning Begins, One San Diego Unified Student Finds His Rhythm

April 29
By Joe Hong

A Serra High student, who is on the autism spectrum, said the transition was tricky at first but now he's getting the hang of it. The change was not as easy for other special needs students.

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Stories featuring work by Joe Hong

Storm clouds over Ocean Beach, November 19, 2019.

Santa Ana Winds, Warmer Temperatures Expected In San Diego County

Jan. 6
By City News Service

Gusty winds are expected in San Diego County Monday and could prove hazardous for high-profile vehicles traveling through mountains passes, according to the National Weather Service.

National City Mayor Alejandra Sotelo-Solis wear...

County Requires Face Covers By May 1, Concerns Rise About Mexico and COVID-19

April 24
By City News Service

The first order will allow ocean access from city beaches for the above-mentioned activities. Piers, boardwalks and parking lots are still closed to the public, and the order does not include boat ramps or watercraft. It also does not apply to state parks and beaches. It also leaves the decision of beach closures to the cities.