Daily Video

July 12, 2021

Daily News Lesson: Origins of Surfside condo collapse and roles of condo boards


Directions: Read the summary, watch the video and answer the discussion questions below. To view the full video and transcript, click here.

Summary: As efforts in Surfside, Florida shift from rescue to recovery, more attention will turn to events leading up to the Chaplain Towers’ collapse. Part of the inquiry will focus on the actions and inactions of the condominium’s homeowner’s board. Stephanie Sy reports with Evan McKenzie of the University of Illinois in Chicago. McKenzie is the author of two books on condo and homeowner associations.

Five Facts: 

  • When did the report on the condo building come out?
  • Why did the building not get the repairs it needed?
  • Who runs and organizes condo buildings? What qualifications do they need?
  • What does Mr. McKenzie describe as the bigger problem with condominium associations across America?
  • How does Mr. McKenzie suggest we work to solve the greater problem facing condo buildings?

Focus Questions: 

  • What are all the problems that McKenzie and anchor Stephanie Sy outline? Do you think that the solutions they provide will solve the stated problems? Why or why not?
  • Media Literacy: Why do you think the producers chose to interview Mr. McKenzie? What does his expertise provide to the piece? What might the piece be missing because they only interviewed one person?

For More: 

  • For more about building infrastructure and why a condo building might fall, see this article
  • For more coverage by the NewsHour on the Surfside condo collapse, see these videos

This Daily News Lesson was written by EXTRA intern Cecilia Curran and EXTRA’s Victoria Pasquantonio. Curran is a sophomore at Amherst College.

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