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Bradenton Herald reporter wins first place in Florida journalism contest

Student says dean told her to ‘hide my nipples’

Braden River High student Lizzy Martinez was called to the office and told her breasts were distracting. She was asked why she wasn't wearing a bra and told to put band-aids over her nipples.
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Braden River High student Lizzy Martinez was called to the office and told her breasts were distracting. She was asked why she wasn't wearing a bra and told to put band-aids over her nipples.

Bradenton Herald reporter Giuseppe Sabella on Thursday was named a winner in the Florida Society of News Editors’ 2019 Journalism Contest.

Sabella, the Herald’s education reporter, won in the Beat Reporting category. The Herald competed with other newspapers with similar circulation size. The prize was presented to Sabella during a luncheon in St. Petersburg.

“Giuseppe is a diligent, hard-working reporter committed to our efforts to produce quality journalism that holds public schools and other institutions accountable,” said Marc R. Masferrer, the Herald’s senior editor. “The stories in Giuseppe’s contest entry clearly reflect that.”

Those stories include reporting on a school guardian’s troubling social media posts; how the Manatee County School District responded after a girl was bullied on a school bus; a book by a school district administrator that touted a “man code;” and problems with a counseling program the district was considering contracting with.

Also part of the entry was a story about a Braden River High School who said officials asked her to cover up her nipples after they became a distraction. That was the most-read story at Bradentons.com in 2018.

Skip Wilhoit, who works on bullying prevention and character education in the School District of Manatee County, self-published a book called "The Man Code" in 2007.

On the way home from Prine Elementary School, five year-old Anabelle Hunting, who is non verbal, screamed out as a girl repeatedly yanked her hair. An aid searched for her lost phone, continually shouting 'where is my phone?'

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