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Linda Lutton

Linda Lutton

Education Reporter

As a WBEZ education reporter, Linda covers schools, education and issues affecting youth.

Her enterprise coverage has examined Chicago’s dropout crisis, race and segregation in schools, school performance, and youth violence. She covered the 2012 Chicago Teachers Union strike and the historic closing of 50 public schools. Her work has been broadcast on This American Life, Re:sound, Marketplace, The World, and NPR’s Morning Edition, All Things Considered, and Weekend Edition. She’s received many honors, including a 2014 Peabody Award.

Prior to joining WBEZ in 2008, Linda worked as a freelance reporter and radio producer in Michoacán, Mexico. Before that, she was the lead education reporter at the Daily Southtown, where she covered education across 85 school districts in Chicago’s south suburbs. Linda’s investigation into a corrupt south suburban school superintendent won a national 2005 Education Writers Association first prize award for investigative journalism and a Chicago Headline Club Watchdog Award. She received a 2004 Studs Terkel Award for excellence in reporting on Chicago’s diverse neighborhoods; it’s one of the awards she’s most proud of.

Linda worked on the award-winning 2013 This American Life “Harper High School” episodes, which documented life in a high school located in a South Side neighborhood racked by violence. The episodes were honored with a Peabody Award, an Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Award and the Third Coast/Richard H. Driehaus Best Documentary Gold Award. Linda also worked on the 2008-09 series “Fifty-Fifty: The Odds of Graduating,” about a high school struggling to stop students from dropping out. Linda’s radio work has been recognized with a Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism, a national Edward R. Murrow award, a Sigma Delta Chi Award, and many others.

In 2013, the Chicago Reader included Linda in its annual People Issue about “what makes Chicago work.” She was honored with a Spencer Fellowship in Education Reporting during the 2014-15 school year, where she explored the impact of poverty on school outcomes.

Linda has a B.A. in Urban Studies and English from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Born and raised in Minnesota, Linda has lived in Chicago’s Pilsen neighborhood since 1994. Her husband is artist-muralist Hector Duarte. Their three children attend Chicago public schools.
 

Recent Stories

WBEZ Presents

Need To Get Out Of Swim Class? Find Dr. Fong.

WBEZ’s Linda Lutton discovers a pattern of students skipping swim class and follows their trail of sick notes to an elusive Dr. Fong.

WBEZ News

Will Chicago Teachers Pension Fund Get Paid On Time?

CPS owes the Chicago Teachers Pension Fund $715.9 million on June 30, and the director of the fund says there will be no more IOUs.

WBEZ News

Illinois Struggles To Expand Charter Schools Despite Giant Pot Of Federal Money

Illinois received a $42 million federal grant to open more charter schools throughout the state, but what it didn't get was many takers.

WBEZ Updates

Arne Duncan: All Chicagoans Need To Help Solve Gun Violence

Former U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan says he “very naively” thought gun violence couldn’t get worse than it was when he headed Chicago public schools. He’s calling on Chicagoans to mentor and hire kids at risk of violence.

WBEZ News

Attempted Rape Shows Community-Police Divide In Lawndale

City officials say police need to improve relations with the community. Tatierra’s story illustrates why they aren't getting better.

WBEZ News

Superintendent: Schools Will ‘Struggle’ To Open In Fall Without State Budget

School officials launched a campaign Monday on Twitter to call for the passage of a state budget.

WBEZ News

25 Percent Of Illinois School Districts Are Borrowing To Pay Bills

This year, many Illinois school district budgets are being balanced only after making deep cuts.

WBEZ Updates

Illinois’ Second Largest School District To Get First Charter School

Board members approve the Elgin Math and Science Academy charter by a 6-1 vote, going against the recommendation of the district to reject the school.

WBEZ Updates

ACLU: We're Not To Blame For Chicago's Spike In Murders

Some in law enforcement say that means more murders.

WBEZ News

Why Palatine Became A Battleground Over Transgender Student Rights

Tuesday's school board election could determine which way Palatine heads in the debate over access to locker rooms for transgender students.

WBEZ News

Civil Rights Investigation Into Cicero Schools Not Its First

The feds are looking into claims that Cicero’s bilingual students face discrimination. The district has faced such complaints before.

WBEZ News

16 Latino Leaders Resign From CPS Advisory Panel

Members of CPS’ Latino Advisory Committee stepped down Wednesday to protest budget cuts they say disproportionately affect Latino students.

WBEZ News

Feds Investigating Alleged Discrimination Against Cicero Students

A Cicero community group says Spanish-speakers in this mostly Latino district are being discriminated against.

WBEZ News

Chicago Activists Protest After DeVos Clears First Hurdle For Ed Secretary

While her nomination cleared a Senate committee, her chances remain uncertain before the full Senate.

WBEZ Presents

The View From Room 205

Can schools make the American dream real for poor kids?

WBEZ News

The View From Room 205

Can schools make the American dream real for poor kids?

WBEZ News

50 Years After King March, Chicagoans Retrace His Steps

Several hundred marchers gathered in Marquette Park to retrace the march that Martin Luther King Jr. made in 1966.

WBEZ News

Dr. King’s Anti-Discrimination March

50 years ago today, Doctor Martin Luther King, Jr led a fair housing march through Marquette Park on Chicago's south side.

WBEZ News

MLK In Chicago: A Memorial To Mark Bitter History

Fifty years ago Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. led a march through Marquette Park. It turned violent and King was struck by a rock. Today, Chicago is marking that history.

WBEZ News

Arne Duncan's New Gig: Fighting Violence with Jobs

“I don’t think we can police our way out of this,” the former U.S. Secretary of Education said.

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