About Student Reporting Labs

PBS NewsHour Student Reporting Labs is building the next generation of informed media creators and consumers


We believe that thoughtful, well-grounded local reporting and the interdisciplinary work of video production are powerful forms of learning and civic engagement.  Public media empowers young people to report stories, reach authentic audiences, join conversations about the issues that affect their future, and recognize their unlimited potential as valued members of society.


Student Reporting Labs (SRL) is a national youth journalism program and public media initiative that trains teenagers across the country to produce stories that highlight the achievements, challenges, and reality of today’s youth. SRL creates transformative educational experiences through video journalism that inspire students to find their voice and engage in their communities.

SRL lesson plans, assignment prompts, and instruction tools facilitate project-based learning that builds critical thinking, problem-solving, teamwork, and communication skills. Teachers, who apply to start a Lab at their school, are connected to their local PBS station and journalism mentors within the community. SRL professional development workshops prepare educators for this work and the SRL Academy brings together students from around the country to hone their skills and advance the future of journalism and public media.

SRL youth media producers work on special projects with Labs and work with students on story pitches, script-writing, narration, rough cuts, and final videos. Students’ stories are published on the website, shared on social media, distributed through partnerships, and aired on local PBS stations and the PBS NewsHour nightly broadcasts.

On the SRL Website, you’ll find:

  • Stories produced by youth reporters across the country
  • Journalism and production curricula focused on news literacy, visual storytelling, and civic engagement
  • STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, Math) videos produced with specialized curricula focused on science literacy and communication
  • A mentoring model that matches Labs with media professionals



  • Title
    Project Description
  • How does what you eat shape who you are? What kinds of dishes do you enjoy with your family and friends? How do these foods and recipes tell a story about you, your family, your culture, and your community?
  • On Our Minds is an Edward R. Murrow award-winning, student-led and student-produced podcast about the biggest mental health challenges young people face. In each episode, two teen reporters guide you through stories by high schoolers from PBS NewsHour Student Reporting Labs about the teenage experience that connects, educates and inspires listeners of all ages.
  • How is school preparing you for your future? What’s working? What could be done differently? How is education adapting to our changing world? What do you want from your education that doesn’t currently exist? Hear from winners and honorable mentions of the Student Journalism Challenge.
  • Student reporters cover the 2022 midterm elections


  • Title
    Project Description
  • This school year, there’s a national conversation going on about how things like history, current events and specific books should — and shouldn’t —be taught in schools. But we know that young people are looking to sources outside of school — online and otherwise — to learn about the world, too.
  • A viral TikTok trend (known as the "devious lick” challenge) has swept schools across the country. What kind of TikTok-inspired acts have happened at your school and how is it affecting students and staff?
  • After a year of online learning, millions of students are heading back to school in person amid surges of the Delta variant.
  • SRL is producing the second season of our podcast "On Our Minds" about teen mental health! For this special reporting project, SRL has two opportunities: 1. apply to be a student host and/or 2. pitch and produce an audio story.
  • SRL is producing a digital special premiering on NewsHour’s platforms and distributed through PBS Plus examining how today’s biggest civic debates are impacting education. For this advanced storytelling assignment, SRL needs your help to produce video news stories or explainers for our education special.
  • Current high school students were born years after the September 11 attacks, but are surrounded by people with vivid memories of the events, either from the news or in-person on that day. How are students today learning about the attacks and the world events that resulted?
  • SRL wants you to share a time when you “felt seen” by something in pop culture or in the media (a movie, book, TV show, song, podcast, comic book, etc.)


  • Title
    Project Description
  • Students learn how to make their own podcast episode, resulting in an audio story about a young person and their experience with mental health.
  • Students explore justice in their own community, and use solutions journalism to produce a story about how people are working to create “justice for all.”
  • Students explore ways the pandemic has changed education by producing a 2-5 minute news story with interviews, b-roll, and/or voiceover narration.
  • Student journalists will find out how young people feel about our democracy: its fairness, its faults, and how they’d like to see it operate if they were in charge.
  • Students capture teen voices on race and injustice in the U.S. and will film and interview students from their school and community to find out how young people are challenging racism and creating change.
  • SRL reports on the effects of COVID-19 on their communities



  • Title
    Project Description
  • Youth journalists in STEM Student Reporting Labs explore how citizen scientists are advancing knowledge while Health SRLs investigate where students turn in a mental health crisis and show how peer to peer counseling programs build healthier school communities.
  • How are Americans experiencing art across the country? Find out in SRL’s latest series, Art in Real Life #artIRL.
  • For our series, "Opportunity in America," teen journalists produced stories that explore dreams, expectations and the barriers teenagers must overcome to achieve their goals.
  • Teen reporters from the PBS NewsHour Student Reporting Labs across the country captured how teens feel about voting and the upcoming midterm elections.


  • Title
    Project Description
  • Youth journalists investigate how health care innovators across the country are shaping our future and redefining what it means to be “healthy.”
  • Youth journalists explore how engineering is reshaping our lives.
  • Youth social movements across America
  • Teens reveal impact and perceptions of misinformation
  • Today’s Youth, Tomorrow’s Jobs





  • Title
    Project Description
  • Concussion awareness in youth sports programs

Major support is provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, the National Science Foundation, the MacArthur Foundation, the Frieda Berlinski Foundation, the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, the National Institutes of Health Science Education Partnership Award, the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, and the Society for Professional Journalists.

If you are interested in supporting the Labs, please use our contact page.