What didn’t make it into the prison story

I got a glimpse of the punitive atmosphere in U.S. prisons when I took my tape machine and camera to record sound and images for the radio feature about the Albion Spiritual Choir. The inmates in the group sing during weekly services at the Albion Correctional Facility, New York State’s largest holding center for female prisoners and home to 40 percent of the state’s incarcerated women.

I arrived on a Sunday afternoon. It was raining.


Inner peace behind bars

Life in prison is no picnic.

This week I got the chance to visit the Albion Correctional Facility, the largest women’s prison in New York State. Three of the inmates say they’ve found a way to deal with the harsh realities of serving time.

Click here to hear the story. You’ll see pictures below.


Gospel choir

I'm working on a story about a gospel choir. If you click on the attachment, you'll hear singing recorded during Sunday's Protestant service. It's a tune I can't get out of my head.


Summer Frost

A few weeks ago, vandals struck the side of the old Lipton soup factory in Albion, New York, proving Robert Frost right.

"Poetry is what gets lost in translation."


The incredible shrinking schools

My high school alma mater may drop its Latin program next year. That’s not a huge deal to most people, I know, but if you think of it an indicator, it signals change in the rural school districts around Rochester: a significant drop in the population of young people in small towns.

There are fewer kids in rural schools. Batavia Daily News reporter Tom Rivers (and, in the name of full disclosure, my brother-in-law) describes the changes in a thorough report below, posted with his permission.

As you’ll see, Tom’s story focuses on sports and science programs and the effects smaller classes may have on what schools can offer. Schools such as Elba, Byron-Bergen, and Oakfield-Alabama might have to team up to offer certain classes and sports programs.

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