Mayte Lara Ibarra and Larissa Martinez had just finished their senior year of high school when they each decided to go public with their immigration status. Both Texas students came to the U.S. illegally, and they didn't want to keep that fact a secret any longer.

Ibarra identified herself on Twitter as one of the 65,000 undocumented youth who graduate high school in the U.S. Martinez revealed her status in the commencement speech she delivered at graduation.

Their actions sparked support and pointed criticism. That was more than a month ago.

Friends of Hammonasset

UPDATE: Dennis Schain, spokesman for the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, stated: "It is likely that we will reduce the times the center is open in the upcoming offseason.  It is much less likely that we would actually close the nature center  for the winter months."


A nature center on Long Island Sound could be closing just a few months after opening a brand new building. 


Ionel Naghi left Romania in 2003 with $50 in his pocket. Once he got to Connecticut, he quickly learned something that was both surprising and confusing.

Patrick Skahill / WNPR

Elementary school students in Newtown will return to a new building next month, and on Friday, media were allowed to tour the facility.

Petteri Sulonen / Creative Commons

The state will no longer be providing sign language interpreters. State officials have laid off more than two dozen interpreters in an effort to close the budget deficit.

David DesRoches / WNPR

It was a muggy and overcast Thursday morning as John Volin led me through patches of tall milkweed and wild raspberries. 

WNPR/David DesRoches

After years of being in limbo, a high school in North Hartford is finally on its way to getting a $100 million makeover. Three separate schools will be housed there, part of the city's efforts to deal with declining enrollment.


Bonnie Hutson has a lot of stories to tell about the importance of feeding children. She works for the West Haven Family Resource Center, which provides food for kids and families during the school year.

There's a reason Jose Luis Vilson's students learn in groups: He wants them to feel comfortable working with anyone in the classroom, something he's realized in his 11 years of teaching doesn't always come naturally.

"I don't really give students a chance to self-select until later on, when I feel like they can pretty much group with anybody," he says.

David DesRoches / WNPR

In the summer of 1877 there was a battle in the mountains of Montana. The Nez Perce people fought the U.S. Army over two days. Dozens of women and children were killed, along with U.S. and Nez Perce fighters. 

Gloda/iStock / Thinkstock

Seven of Connecticut's 13 private, non-profit colleges are graduating fewer than two-thirds of the student body. That's according to an analysis of federal data by Third Way, a Washington D.C.-based think tank.

David DesRoches / WNPR

University of Connecticut student Haddiyyah Ali got an email in January from a woman whose story floored her. The woman was working at a talent agency in 1965 when she says Bill Cosby invited her to a party at his house.

WNPR/David DesRoches

About half of all teenagers in foster care never graduate from high school. The state created an online learning program for these students to help fix the problem.

Creative Commons/Static.Pexels.com

Hundreds of prison inmates across Connecticut will now have access to federal grant money to help pay for college. 

Daderot / Creative Commons

The Connecticut Supreme Court has ordered a judge to hold another hearing to determine whether the names of some University of Connecticut animal researchers can be kept secret to protect their safety.

Asnuntuck Community College

Colleges and universities in New England are increasingly offering discounts to attract students from nearby states. 

Creative Commons/StockMonkeys.com

Did you know you could get a college scholarship for being tall

WNPR/David DesRoches

It was one of those days that will stick with 14-year-old Lucca Riccio. 

When Caitlin Cheney was living at a campground in Washington state with her mother and younger sister, she would do her homework by the light of the portable toilets, sitting on the concrete.

She maintained nearly straight A's even though she had to hitchhike to school, making it there an average of three days a week. "I really liked doing homework," says Cheney, 22, who is now an undergraduate zoology student at Washington State University. "It kept my mind off reality a little bit."

WNPR/David DesRoches

At Hanover Elementary School in Meriden, Desiree Riley's kindergarten class read a book about a badger that bullies a raccoon. There was a moment in the book where the raccoon had to make a choice about how to handle the bully.

Laura Dahl / Flickr

How do we define intelligence? Where does it come from, and what roles do genetics and environment play in its development? We live in a world that values different types of intelligence subjectively -- and we watch as those values shift in accordance with changing cultural attitudes. 

Waterbury Public Schools

Jahana Hayes is a history teacher at John F. Kennedy High School in Waterbury, Connecticut. She's also the 2016 National Teacher of the Year. This hour, she stops by to talk about her career, her new national title, and her recent visit to the White House

U.S. Department of Education

Connecticut's high school graduation rates reached an all time high last year. But a closer look at the figures reveals the state still has some work to do.

U.S. Navy

Yale University has awarded more than 3,600 degrees during ceremonies at its 315th commencement. Later Monday, the school will confer military commissions to its first group of ROTC graduates in more than four decades.

Diane Orson / WNPR

It's commencement time at colleges and universities nationwide and many graduates are asking themselves: what’s next?

WNPR/David DesRoches

It was an emotional school board meeting for Superintendent Alicia Roy. After hearing Thursday evening that more than two-thirds of the district'’s teachers want her to resign, she became visibly upset, and struggled to respond.

Peter Morenus / UConn

West Hartford officials are planning to buy a University of Connecticut property instead of allowing a for-profit international school to come to town.

Alberto Cairo / ProPublica

A few years ago,  a public outcry forced schools to re-examine their use of seclusion and restraints among students. This hour, we have a conversation with the Office of the Child Advocate about the use of restraints and seclusion in schools. We also hear from a parent of a developmentally disabled student about the challenges she faces in her child’s public school education.

Gloda/iStock / Thinkstock

There's a debate in West Hartford over plans by a for-profit company to open an educational academy for Chinese students in town. The plan would include sending some students to the public high schools.

What are the pros and cons in allowing international students into our public schools at a time when districts face declining enrollment and budget constraints? Is this a creative way to fund public schools or is it detrimental to their mission? 

JMA Students Javon Franklin, Sharonda Williams, and Jordan Goffe

Students from the Journalism and Media Academy magnet school abandoned their typical blue uniforms for formal attire as they interviewed an American civil rights leader who also struggled to end apartheid alongside Nelson Mandela.