public schools in the pandemic

Lt Governor's Office/WKVI Radio website

Today:  "Times" reporters Mary Freda and Carley Lanich are with us to talk about the stories they posted on the newspaper's website and in print editions this week, including the latest on COVID pandemic-related issues with regional schools, a court decision that affects the former owner of the Crown Theatre in downtown Crown Point, packages being stolen off residents' porches and plans for major expansion projects in the Crown Point Community Schools. There is now a third round of COVID-19 response grants available for communities to help those impacted by the pandemic. Lieutenant Governor Suzanne Crouch and the Office of Community and Rural Affairs are working with and overseeing the program. Lakeshore Public Radio's Sharon Jackson spoke with the Lieutenant Governor about the next round of grants. And we bring back our conversation with Edgewater Health executive Dr. Danita Johnson-Hughes about this evening's virtual fundraiser.

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Today:  On this "Reporters' Roundtable" Thursday, we have Lakeshore Public Radio reporter Sharon Jackson's conversation with Crown Point Mayor David Uran, who is convalescing at home after having tested positive for COVID-19 about 18 days ago.  He is doing well, and he shared his experiences with Sharon.  "Post-Tribune" reporter Hannah Reed and "Times" business reporter Joseph Pete are talking about the stories they wrote and posted online and in the print editions.  Hannah's stories are pandemic-related, about school districts changing their students' instruction modes, and Joseph's stories run the gamut, from business layoff-related (BP in Chicago and Whiting) to the downtown Gary demolition projects to the passing of Gary teenaged chef Ben Watkins.

Indiana Public Media

Today:   "Reporters Roundtable" guests today are "Post-Tribune" reporters Hannah Reed and Carole Carlson.  They talk about the stories they put out in print and online, and all involve public school districts.  Hannah's stories are about local schools either returning to in-person classes and the number of COVID-19 cases found during the first month of in-person classes.   Carole will talk about Portage Township Schools students returning to in-person classes next month, and about the Gary Common Council endorsement of the upcoming Gary Community Schools referendum vote.  The Council heard Manager Paige McNulty explain, before their vote, the eight-year $71.2 million referendum that would support the school district's operating costs. 

Corey Ohlenkamp/The Star Press

Today: We talk with Ball State University professor Michael Hicks, the director of the Center for Business and Economic Research, about a new report just released that reviews the impact that the "digital divide" in Indiana schools and communities may have on students' abilities for e-learning when classes resume, in some form, this academic year. The report indicates that more than 84,000 K-12 students do not have the Internet access they need for proper learning -- and not all of the deficiencies are in rural school districts.  We find out more about the new social media group "Out in LaPorte" from PFLAG board member Esther Stiles.   And we bring back our conversation with Purdue University economist Larry DeBoer on a lengthy study about the impact of the pandemic the recession it caused for local, county and state government.