WNPR

David DesRoches

Reporter

David finds and tells stories about education and learning for WNPR f.m. and dot org. He also teaches journalism and media literacy to high school students, and he starts the year with the lesson: “Conflicts of interest: Real or perceived? Both matter.” He thinks he has a sense of humor, and he also finds writing in the third person awkward, but he does it anyway. 

He's won some awards. He's lost some, too. Winning is better, but neither really matter. What matters is the work. Here are some of his stories that matter: special education; toxic PCBs in schools; hate crime; environmental damages

When he was a kid, people told him life isn't fair. He still doesn't buy it. Consequently, he could be biased toward fairness, which manifests in different ways, such as fighting inequality and inequity. He is an activist for truth and for transparency. He tries to paraphrase smart mentors but he often paraphrases Jeffrey Lebowski instead. If you have a problem with his stories or his bias, talk to him. Call him out. If you’re right, he’ll be better for it. If you’re wrong, you at least got something off your chest. 

His true passion is music. It’s in his veins, always there. Kurt Vonnegut, a lifelong atheist, once said that “…virtually every writer I know would rather be a musician,” and that “music is the proof of the existence of God.” It turns out, a lot of journalists are musicians. If they’re not, they’re likely huge music fans. David's both. He also loves to cook, woodwork, write fiction (never for WNPR) and will probably continue writing about his trip to Ethiopia for his entire life (it was over ten years ago).

He loves being in the studio and being creative with sound. Radio is right up his alley. He enjoys telling people’s stories, holding the powerful to account, FOIA’ing and data diving, eating poorly and trying to find words to end this bio. How about an onomatopoeia? Bam. 

Ways to Connect

Josh Nilaya / WNPR

Tyqua Gibson thought her 12-year-old daughter wasn't being challenged in Hartford Public Schools. So she sent her to Bloomfield through the Open Choice program -- a state-funded system that allows Hartford students to attend schools in one of 26 surrounding towns.

Pool Photo / Stephanie Aaronson / Wall Street Journal

Special education professionals and parents gathered at the University of Connecticut's School of Law on Friday, to talk about changes that may follow a landmark court case decided last September. One of those changes has to do with perceptions of children with severe disabilities.

Capital Preparatory Magnet School

State auditors found that a Hartford magnet school has been cherry-picking its students, bypassing the random lottery process that's supposed to determine who goes there. 

David DesRoches/WNPR

A Derby man who was hours away from being deported back to Guatemala was granted a last-minute stay on his decades-old deportation order. He now has 30 days to determine a solution for his immigration status. 

David DesRoches / WNPR

Officials at the Hartford office of Immigration and Customs Enforcement locked the front doors to the Abraham Ribicoff Federal Building on Main Street Tuesday, as activists staged what they called a civil disobedience action. The protesters are attempting to stop the deportation of a Derby man, originally from Guatemala, who's lived in the U.S. for 24 years. Eventually, Hartford Police arrested 19 of the protestors.

Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights

Eduardo Vasquez came to the U.S. from Mexico when he was two. He has been able to stay and attend college through a federal program started under President Barack Obama. While President Donald Trump has extended these protections, questions remain about how long they will be extended. 

Leo Leung / Creative Commons

Ever since the Presidential election we’ve heard the buzzwords — “echo-chamber,” “facts,” “alternative facts.” More than ever our country is divided by how we get our information and what we see as the “truth.” Even reality itself has become debatable.

David DesRoches/WNPR

Each student took the stage in front of hundreds of their peers at Hill Central High School. And one by one, they revealed their passions, their fears, their hopes and insecurities. And one by one, their words were met with thunderous applause.

creative commons

Groton Public Schools are planning to lay off 70 staff members and close one school as the district grapples with a multi-million-dollar cut from the state. 

David DesRoches / WNPR

Two of the state's largest school systems picked new superintendents recently, leaving only one major city -- New Haven -- without a permanent full-time leader. 

Jimmy Emerson / Creative Commons

Researchers at the University of Connecticut say that a state effort to improve the lowest performing school districts lacks coherence, leading to questions about the program's effectiveness.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Hartford residents gathered Thursday at a city school to talk about a report that found the school district failed to protect students from abuse and neglect for the last decade. District leaders have a plan in place to address this longstanding problem.

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A spokesman for the federal agency that oversees immigration enforcement said its agents will continue to refer to themselves as "police," even though Hartford cops and the city's mayor are asking them to stop.

Facebook

Hartford city officials are criticizing the federal agency that's in charge of immigration enforcement because agents are referring to themselves as "police."

A report released by a children's advocacy group shows that opportunities for young people vary widely between cities and towns across the state. 

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