This year was a year of exploration for me. I was fortunate to have the space to research and write on a wide range of topics, from transportation policy, to domestic labor, to voting rights, to charter schools.
Here are the ten pieces I’m most proud of from 2015:
1. When Charters Go Union
My summer American Prospect print story looked at the growing movement to unionize charter school teachers, and the impact that’s having on the labor movement and education reform.
2. Teaching Character: Grit, Privilege, and American Education’s Obsession with Novelty
I wrote a web feature for The American Prospect on the rise of “grit” fervor in American classrooms.
3. Cecile Richards: Grace Under Fire
My cover story for The American Prospect’s winter 2016 issue on Planned Parenthood, Cecile Richards, and the tumultuous battle for reproductive rights.
4. Civil Rights Activists in Baltimore Want More Ex-Felons in the Voting Booth in 2016
I wrote several pieces for VICE this year about the Freddie Gray protests and their aftermath. This one looks at the oft-ignored connection between disenfranchisement, poverty, and brutality.
5. A New Course: Larry Hogan wants to change Maryland’s unique charter school laws and bring in more charters, but will kids suffer?
My cover story for Baltimore City Paper on Maryland charter school politics, and the governor’s ambitions to dramatically change education within the state.
6. Welcome to the Courtroom That is Every Renter’s Nightmare
I spent more than eight months working on this feature about Baltimore’s rent court, which was beautifully illustrated by Sky Kalfus in Next City. Earlier this month, a new report was published on rent court, and I wrote a short follow up.
7. Chris Christie and the Republican Default on Public Investment
When this story came out in January Chris Christie was looking much more promising as a presidential candidate. Nonetheless, this piece looks at how Christie killed one of the most important infrastructure projects on the East Coast for short-term, political gain.
8. We Can’t Talk About Housing Policy Without Talking About Racism
There’s been a renewed focus on the ways in which housing segregation limits opportunity and perpetuates inequality. I wrote about some of the new research that’s emerged in this field, and important caveats to keep in mind.
9. The Marriage Cure
I take on the persistent, yet frustratingly convoluted argument that marriage, and its decline, explain rising inequality.
10. School Choice and the Chaotic State of Racial Desegregation
I am fascinated by the relationship between the school choice movement and the movement to desegregate schools. I wrote four other pieces on school integration this year, and hope to explore these issues more in 2016.
Thanks, and happy New Year!