Since this year’s White House correspondents’ dinner is all about journalism, and not about the celebrities who have in recent years threatened to overrun the event, who qualifies as a VIP “get” of a guest at the black-tie affair?
The Huffington Post is bringing a table full of the Kansas high school journalism students who made headlines of their own this month for busting their school’s principal for faking her educational credentials. HuffPo has long courted buzzy celebs to invite to the event, and this year it decided that the team of student investigative journos from the Booster Redux at Pittsburg High School were the perfect of-the-moment guests.
HuffPo Editor in Chief Lydia Polgreen said the students, whose reporting eventually led to their principal’s resignation, represented what’s happening in the media on a national scale. “There’s been a reconnection with the fundamentals of journalism — the brass tacks and the shoe leather,” she said. That’s just the kind of reporting the teens used to blow the lid off the big story, she added. “I’m personally inspired by these kids.”
The kids were apparently excited by the invitation to come to Washington and mix with the pros — they’re buying dresses and planning to get their hair done for the formal affair — though Polgreen says she hopes they won’t be disappointed by the low celebrity wattage.
But hey, since there will be few Hollywood types packed into the Washington Hilton, the kids might turn out to be an attraction of their own. “I would love it if everyone lined up to take selfies with these kids on the red carpet,” Polgreen said.