With friends like these
Tuesday, April 01, 2003
What to do when you don't like your child's friends By Barbara Abromitis, Ed.D.
Illustrations by Jana Christy
EDITOR’S NOTE: Since August 2002, writer and educator Barbara Abromitis has written and reported four stories for Chicago Parent. They are: "The inside guide to room parenting" in August, 2002; "Solutions to chronic behavior" in November, 2002; "Are friendships forever" in April, 2003, and "Why kids choose the friends they choose" in June, 2003.
In all those stories Abromitis quoted parents she found through an Internet listserv for mothers who write. She asked questions only via e-mail and did not represent that in the story. Further, she misrepresented where the families were from, saying they were from the Chicago area when they were not.
These are both violations of Chicago Parent practices. In all our stories, Chicago Parent strives for the highest standards of journalism. Accuracy is utmost in our minds.
Chicago Parent staff realized this only after receiving a note from someone on the listserv. Unfortunately, we can no longer assume tacit understanding of our standards. As a result, we have tightened our procedures.
Abromitis offered an apology to Chicago Parent staff and readers, saying it was not her intent to mislead. Nonetheless, she will not write again for Chicago Parent.
We never would have imagined that our Chicago Parent world would be rocked by ethics issues in the midst of a national discussion among journalists, sparked by charges that New York Times reporter Jayson Blair plagiarized and made up facts.
It proves to us that no one is immune and any news organization must be vigilant. We apologize for the errors.