Mirror reporters win awards

Mirror reporters have won awards from the Education Writers Association, from a national health association, and from a top state agriculture group.

Reporters Jacqueline Rabe Thomas, Keith M. Phaneuf and Mark Pazniokas won a first prize for a series of investigative stories that led to the resignations of the two highest officials in the Connecticut State University system.

“Nobody brought more accountability to the system than these reporters,” one judge said.

Rabe Thomas, who specializes in education coverage, also won a first prize for more than a half-dozen stories she wrote on various topics, including a story that revealed the difference in skill levels between children who attend charter schools and those in non-charter public schools.

In addition to those awards, Mirror health reporter Arielle Levin Becker won a third place from the Association of Health Journalists for her story on home caretakers.

Also, Jan Ellen Spiegel, who focuses on the environment, won recognition for excellence in reporting from the Connecticut Agricultural Information Council.