Feedback is welcome. So are suggestions for next year’s coverage.
The Keystone Crossroads team reflected on our body of work over past year and picked these highlights.
Take a look. Feedback is welcome. So are suggestions for next year’s coverage.
Dividing Lines: How Pennsylvania’s elections really are rigged
Pennsylvania’s 7th congressional district is often considered the poster child of gerrymandering. The district cuts through five counties and a number of municipalities including Chester, Upper Darby and Glenolden. On the map, the district looks like an alien character from the classic arcade game Space Invaders. (Map Source)
Equity or Bust: Are Ontario public schools a model for Pennsylvania?
(Graphics by Azavea/For Keystone Crossroads)
Pa. town law says landlords can’t rent to ex-drug offenders; one woman fights back
Darcy Smith, who was convicted on felony drug charges and served time in prison, was recently sent an eviction notice from her landlord because of a local ordinance. Smith is fighting the ordinance in Cambria County court. (Lindsay Lazarski/WHYY)
Trash talk: Fight over Scranton-area landfill exposes generational divide
The state’s third-largest landfill, Keystone Sanitary Landfill, near Scranton, Pennsylvania, is hoping for a 50-year expansion permit. A group of residents are speaking out against the expansion. (Jessica Kourkounis/For Keystone Crossroads)
Grapple podcast: giving voice to people living and working in distressed communities
Through personal narratives and long-form storytelling, Grapple brings listeners conversations that tell the story of America’s profound economic and social changes — including how distressed communities have changed over time, what they’re grappling with today, and how they’re redefining themselves. The podcast’s first season takes you to a series of communities across Pennsylvania that were once vibrant but struggle today. It also features breakout episodes — to dig deeper into the big issues you’re hearing about — with leading economists, sociologists, writers and more. (Lindsay Lazarski/WHYY)
Locks and dams: How the condition of waterway infrastructure threatens economic growth
The D.L. Johnson and the coal barge it’s transporting approach the Newell Toll Bridge, which spans the Ohio River connecting Newell, W. Va. and East Liverpool, Ohio. (Ryan Loew/For Keystone Crossroads)
The Legacy of Lead in Pa. Cities
Lead paint removal on a old church siding. (File image Babar760/Bigstock.com)
Lawsuit over refugee education in Lancaster
Phoenix Academy in Lancaster is geared toward ensuring high-risk students get a high school diploma before dropping or aging out. But lawyers suing the School District of Lancaster on behalf of student refugees say their clients shouldn’t have been placed at Phoenix due to its condensed curriculum and minimal English as a Second Language support. The district takes responsibility for ESL curriculum in its contract with Camelot Education, the private company running Phoenix. (Emily Previti/WITF)
How 25 years of changing enrollment has created winners and losers in Pa. school funding
A Keystone Crossroads analysis of the population shifts in Pennsylvania’s 500 school districts since 1991, when “hold harmless” began to dictate school funding decisions. (Map by Rachael Feierman)
Video: Parents from across Pa. weigh in on education funding
As part of the Keystone Crossroads’ continued look at education funding in Pennsylvania, multimedia journalist Jessica Kourkounis set out across the state to speak to parents about how they were feeling: “I interviewed parents in cities and towns who are from varied circumstances and backgrounds. They are parents of public school children and charter school students. Some of their school’s situations are more dire than others but they are all feeling that something needs to be done to address the complicated funding issues facing Pennsylvania. Every parent is looking for the same thing for their children in school; equality, safety, learning and preparation for their children’s future.” (Jessica Kourkounis/For Keystone Crossroads)