For iowan parents, a different kind of service journalism

This is so smart: The Gazette in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, wasn’t sure how to fill all the space that usually goes toward arts/sports coverage and all the coupons/classifieds in the PennySaver circular (what with advertisers backing off everything lately), so they decided to 1) launch a kids’ page and 2) — and this is the extra cool part — team up with area school districts to publish educational materials in the PennySaver

What a brilliant way to make the most of the newspaper’s print circulation and bring much-needed help to all the parents learning how to homeschool on the fly (and it’s a function that becomes urgently important when you factor in how 11% of Iowans straight up don’t have access to high-speed internet). On one hand, The Gazette isn’t charging the school district for the PennySaver space, so they’re not making up the lost ad revenue, but one could definitely see how this kind of unique service could boost print subscriptions and build on the paper’s relationship with the community. 

(Speaking of helping parents out during quarantine….this is only a little related but I can’t stop watching this video of Elmo’s dad empathizing so hard….like you just KNOW Elmo is a delightful but totally tiring child). 

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