News Local/State - April 16, 2018

Illinois Prison System Spent Less Than $300 On Books Last Year

Last year, the Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC) spent $276 on books for its educational programming across 28 correctional facilities, according to data obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request. In the early 2000s, however, the state prison system spent roughly $750,000 each year on books. The dramatic decrease in funding stands in contrast to research that shows educational programming for inmates can significantly impact recidivism rates. Prison librarians, academics and a former Illinois inmate all agree that prison libraries play an important role in that work. 

News Local/State - March 06, 2018

U of I Graduate Workers Strike Hinges On Tuition Waivers

Hundreds of classes have been canceled and dozens more relocated as a strike by graduate employees at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign continues into a second week. On Tuesday night, graduate workers occupied the office of university president Tim Killeen. Strikers have a variety of demands, but one of the most contentious points focuses on the future of tuition waivers -- and whether some graduate workers will have to pay tuition while employed in academic positions on campus.

News Local/State - February 07, 2018

Schools Are Using Poverty Simulations To Build Empathy. But Do They Work?

About 100 teachers and support staff recently gathered in a junior high school in central Illinois to take on the roles of people living in poverty. It’s part of a poverty simulation used by schools across the country that’s supposed to challenge stereotypes. But some say it takes more than a one-time simulation to change attitudes and behaviors.

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