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Colombo, Cavazos to join Chalkbeat

Chalkbeat is pleased to announce two new staff members who will be joining the Indiana bureau.

Hayleigh Colombo comes to Chalkbeat from the Lafayette Journal & Courier. As higher education reporter there, she covered former Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels’ tumultuous foray into higher education as president of Purdue University.

Hayleigh Colombo
Hayleigh Colombo
via Yes Prep

Colombo’s stories about Daniels’ political activity as Purdue’s president prompted an apology from the former governor. She’s also covered business for the Journal & Courier.

She graduated cum laude with high honors in journalism from the Eugene S. Pulliam School of Journalism at Butler University in Indianapolis, where she double majored in political science. Colombo’s experience includes internships at The Hill in Washington, D.C., the Wisconsin State Journal, Indianapolis Business Journal and Indianapolis Monthly.

For Chalkbeat she will cover Indianapolis Public Schools and issues of educational change in Marion County and across the state. Her first day is Tuesday. Follow her on Twitter @hayleighcolombo. Her email address is

In July, Shaina Cavazos will join Chalkbeat Indiana as a reporting intern.

Cavazos has just completed a master’s degree from the Missouri School of Journalism. She has worked as a K-12 education reporter for the Columbia Missourian and a business reporter for the Cleveland Plain Dealer. At the Missourian, she wrote about Common Core and literacy, among other education topics.

Shaina Cavazos
Shaina Cavazos

Cavazos grew up in Schaumburg, Ill., a northwest suburb of Chicago. She graduated magna cum laude with bachelor’s degrees in economics and journalism from the University of Missouri. For Chalkbeat she will cover state standards and state and local issues. Follow her on Twitter @ShainaRC. Her email address is

Chalkbeat Indiana launched in October as part of a national network of education sites offering daily, unbiased coverage of public education, focusing on K-12 schools and especially low-income communities. The network began with sites in New York and Colorado before expanding last year to Indiana and Tennessee.

Chalkbeat came to Indiana because of the state’s central role in several national efforts to make educational change.

As an organization, Chalkbeat believed that a strong, independent press is vital to helping schools improve. You can read more about our model and how it fits into the bigger picture of new journalism projects in this story by USA Today.

Chalkbeat Indiana’s founding bureau chief is Scott Elliott, the former education reform reporter at the Indianapolis Star and the current president of the national Education Writers Association.

For more information about Chalkbeat, its mission and its leadership, please visit our About Us page.

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