Author Archives: Natalie Rhoads

Waze to stay safe

The GPS navigation and social networking app Waze, which has more than 50 million users, uses nearby drivers’ alerts and real-time traffic to save you time while driving. But, as of last week it could start adding a few minutes to your commute. However, it is all under the goal of keeping you safe. The […]

Education’s Greatest Challenge is Chronic Absenteeism

More than 6 million students nationwide missed at least 15 days of school in the 2013-14 school year, according to data collection by the U.S. Department of Education released last week. Missed school days are a predictor of high school dropout, which has been linked to poor outcomes later in life, including poverty, poor health […]

Will Free Sunscreen Prevent Skin Cancer?

Nicer weather across the country is bringing everyone outside in droves to enjoy the sunshine. But most of you won’t be using sunscreen. That’s why many cities have decided to provide sunscreen in public parks, free of charge, in hopes you’ll use it.   In the past three decades, more people have had skin cancer […]

To Keep Kids Reading, Keep Them from Wheezing

One of the biggest barriers to equal educational opportunity disproportionately affects low-income and minority students, lasts throughout childhood, and causes more than 13 million missed school days annually. Yet this barrier—asthma—can be relatively easily controlled.   Children as young as pre-school age who are missing numerous school days, whether they are excused absences or not, […]

Programs and Policies that Improve Health, Education, Crime and Other Sectors Highlighted in New Win-Win Project Website

You often hear that it costs more to imprison a person for a year than to send them to Harvard with full tuition, room and board for a year. On the basis of factoids like this, people often claim cities and states can save money by investing in programs that prevent violence and crime, rather […]

Income Segregation Reproduces Education Segregation

Sixty-two years ago this week, the U.S. Supreme Court declared segregated schools unconstitutional. Yet many remain racially, ethnically and family-income homogenous today. Just this week, a federal judge ruled that a Mississippi school needed to be desegregated. A recent study blames some of that segregation on parents with school-aged children. The author found that income […]

Restricting Access to Abortions Will Backfire

Banning abortions won’t stop them from happening; it will just make them more likely to result in health complications or even death.   The Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade landmark case in 1973 legalized abortion in all 50 states. However, in 1992 it was declared that states could pass restrictions that do not present an […]

The Latest Trend: Outdoor Pre-schools

Can outdoor preschools and farm-to-preschool programs help make our children healthier or are they just the latest trend? An urban farm preschool took first place this year at an international contest that focuses on innovative ideas in architecture, interior design, industrial design and urban planning. The idea is that children learn through experience, using their […]

Segregated Neighborhoods Are Damaging the American Dream

Restrictive zoning rules that allow for racially and economically homogenous neighborhoods are ruining the American dream for everyone.   The number of neighborhoods with mixed class and cultural backgrounds are shrinking. Los Angeles is the most segregated city in America for white and Hispanic populations. African-American and white residential segregation has somewhat improved, but as […]

Alternative Uses for Vacant Lots

Ron Finley has been busy digging up a new future for LA. His urban guerilla gardening, featured in a TED talk, encourages kids in South Central LA to help him produce beautiful vegetables from unused bits of land around LA, proving that you can make silk from a sow’s ear after all. Ron, who initially […]