Education Roadblocks for Kids With Disabilities

Only a little more than half of New York City students with disabilities graduated high school in 2021, significantly less than the 81% graduation rate citywide. This disparity could be largely attributed to the lack of support students with special needs are given in many schools. 

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Russian Ukraine War Could Ignite Global Food Shortage

The Russian war against Ukraine is having worldwide consequences. In March, the United Nations food chief David Beasley warned that the war has created “a catastrophe on top of a catastrophe” and that we may see a food crisis worse than during the Second World War.

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Pole Heat Waves Raise a Red Flag!

Both the northern and southern poles experienced unprecedented heat waves over the same weekend in March. “This Antarctic heat wave definitely changes what we thought was possible for Antarctic weather,” Dr. Jonathan Wille, a postdoctoral researcher in polar meteorology at Université Grenoble Alpes in France, tweeted following the freak event. 

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Meet an IndyKids Reporter… Zahra Latheef!

Twelve-year-old Zahra Latheef lives in Texas, where she has been homeschooled since kindergarten. She has been writing for IndyKids for just over two years now. Zahra is also a budding audio journalist and took part in the recent IndyKids Climate Series Podcast.

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Someday You Could Be… An Editor Like John Tarleton

John Tarleton is the editor in chief of the New York-based Indypendent newspaper, which he also co-founded in 2000. John also co-hosts a weekly news radio show on WBAI. The Indypendent is the largest progressive newspaper in New York.

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Who Am I?

I was born in New Iberia, La., on July 27, 1898.
Both of my parents died before I reached the fourth grade. I went to live with my grandmother, a former slave. I only ever received an elementary school education.

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Getting Wild With…Hippopotamuses!

Hippopotamuses, which are native to Africa, are semi-aquatic animals, meaning that they live both in water and on land. An adult male hippo can weigh up to 9,000 pounds, but they are still very good swimmers. Hippo populations have been dropping due to habitat loss caused by climate change and hunting. As hippos are reliant on freshwater systems, they are often threatened by drought and the loss of grazing areas.

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Our Diverse Books Are Under Attack!

By Mikhail Razzak, age 13 and IndyKids staff

The number of book challenges in the United States rose from 156 in all of 2020 to 330 in just the fall of 2021, according to a new American Library Association report. Since January 2021, more than 30 states have introduced classroom censorship laws which regulate discussions and literature, according to PEN America.

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“Don’t Say Gay” Bill Passes in Florida. What’s Next?

By Jessie Mitnick, age 14

The Parental Rights in Education bill, which aims to restrict teachers’ ability to discuss or teach anything related to sexual orientation and gender identity within classrooms, was signed into law at the end of March by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis. Supporters of the legislation say that it will improve parents’ ability to control the information that children receive regarding LGBTQ+ topics, therefore giving them increased parental control and authority. However, it has been dubbed the “Don’t Say Gay” law by critics because it could effectively eliminate people’s right to even mention something related to the LGBTQ+ community within a school environment.

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As Climate Disasters Worsen, Communities Mobilize Around Mutual Aid

By Ziggy Gleason, age 12 and IndyKids staff

Last year was one of the most catastrophic and costly years on record for climate disasters in the United States, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) said in a recent report. During 2021 alone, there were 20 climate disasters which cost the U.S. economy $1 billion or more and killed 688 people.

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Someday You Could Be… A Producer Like Nat Geo’s Carla Wills

By Samir Iydroose, age 11

Formerly a senior news producer at Democracy Now!, Carla Wills is the manager of audio production at National Geographic and the executive editor of the Into the Depths podcast. Into the Depths follows a team of Black researchers and divers as they discover and explore many of the thousands of shipwrecks from the transatlantic slave trade.

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Personal Report: Should America’s Teachers Have to Crawl on Ice for a Raise?

By Leah Matloff, age 12

During an intermission at a South Dakota hockey game in December last year, an event called “Dash for Cash” took place. Ten local teachers stood in the middle of the hockey rink, and $5,000 in one-dollar bills was dropped in front of them. The teachers quickly got on their knees and scrambled to pick up the money…

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Getting Wild With… Tasmanian Devils

By Henry Russell, age 11

Tasmanian devils are rather cute black- or brown-furred mammals that look a little like baby bears. They are the world’s largest meat-eating marsupial, reaching 30 inches in length and weighing up to 26 pounds. They have very sharp teeth that can deliver one of the strongest bites of any mammal. These animals got the name “devil” after early Europeans witnessed their growling, lunging and teeth-bearing characteristics.

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Are Passive Greenhouses the Future of Farming?

By Theo Bloom, age 11

Dong Jianyi, an agronomist originally from China, has introduced Alberta, Canada, to large-scale greenhouses that don’t use electricity. Passive greenhouses can allow you to produce vegetables even in freezing temperatures. Dong’s Freshpal Farms is thought to be the largest commercial passive solar greenhouse in Alberta.

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Pentagon Makes Moves to Prevent Extremism Within the Military

By Isha Seth, age 11

The Pentagon is now enforcing new rules targeting far-right extremism and white supremacy within the U.S. military following the Jan. 6 insurrection. NPR analysis found that nearly one out of every five rioters charged for their participation in the riot has a connection to the U.S. military. 

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