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Tag Archives: frontpage

Local Middle School-Produced Documentary Wins National Award

Students from Batchelor Middle School in Bloomington took on issues with the No Child Left Behind Act in a documentary that just won a national award.

The students won Third Prize in a contest sponsored by C-SPAN. In order to participate, middle school and high school students from all over the nation had to answer the same question: how has a policy, legislation or action taken by one of the branches of the federal government affected you or your community?

Eighth Grade Students Sejal Rajamani, Nikki Nguyen and Piper Watson, with the support of their teacher, Jeff Rudkin, answered with their documentary titled “No Child Left Behind: Time to Change.”

“I think we’re emphasizing that No Child Left Behind is old and needs to change and standardized testing has a lot of flaws,” Rahamani says. “Although the government should be informed on how school’s are doing, standardized testing might not be the way to do it.”

When asked how No Child Left Behind has affected her life, she said it makes her feel stressed.

No Child Left Behind was passed under the George W. Bush administration. It has increased the time dedicated to standardised tests in the classroom. As a result, not only students, but also teachers and schools get evaluated solely on the performance of these tests. According to Rudkin other criteria should be taken into account.

“Do they do community service, things like that, a lot of things that play into a school’s grade rather than a single test that lasts a few weeks,” Rudkin says.

Many schools around the nation have also had to cut down on electives, to accommodate the time and money that taking this test demands.

“We’re lucky we have a school that still has electives and supports a well-rounded education,” Rudkin says. “But a lot of schools across the country are having to cut electives, like P.E., to focus on this test.

When asked about an alternative, Rudkin answered that the core idea of No Child Left Behind is commendable. He says it’s the way the law has been implemented through a single standardised test that fails to work.

The problem, says Rudkin, is that legislators are not willing to sit down to talk about the alternatives.

“The legislators aren’t willing to sit down and talk with teachers who have ideas on how to improve it,” he says.

For Nguyen, one of the students, the solution has to be found closer to home, within the community.

“I think we should bring it down to a local level so the people in the community can address what needs to be done because they probably know more about what’s going on in the community than the state or national government,” Nguyen says.

ISTEP+, the standardized test in the state of Indiana, is taken every Spring in subjects such as English and Math.

Activate! – Buskirk-Chumley Theater: Donna Cohen


Donna Cohen shares anecdotes and her experience volunteering at the Buskirk-Chumley theater. Also, three volunteer opportunities available through the Buskirk.

Bloomington Volunteer Network: Buskirk-Chumley Theater
Buskirk-Chumley Theater

Firehouse Sessions – Nora Jane Struthers


In the studio today for a new Firehouse Session is Nora Jane Struthers accompanied by Joe Overton.  Nora Jane Struthers & The Party Line are here from Nashville, TN playing at local venue The Bishop whilst touring their new album “Wake”. We get the chance to chat with Struthers day 2 of her next hectic three month tour schedule across the USA.  Struthers chats to us about her new autobiographical writing style, inspired by love and what was involved with getting this album ready and out on the road.

1. “The Other Side”
2. “Mistake”
3. “The South”

Hosted by Angela Backstrom
Engineered by Jim Lang & Dan Withered
Produced by Katie Moulton
Executive Producer is Jim Manion

Originally aired on February 26th, 2015.

Local Live – Joe Donnelly and the Indulgences


Joe Donnelly and the Indulgences play us some tracks from their new album “Everyday.” Joe is a middle school band director and the song themes are drawn from that experience.

1. Everyday
2. Step One
3. Workin’
4. Mud Covered Toes
5. I’m Getting Tired

Joe Donnelly: Electric Guitar, Saxophone, Keyboard, Guitar Vocal
Kevin MacDowell (AKA Kid Kazooey): Electric Guitar, Keyboard, Vocal
Scott Kellogg: Bass, Vocals
Jay Olson: Drums

Hosted by Frankie Ferrell
Engineered by Jim Lang & Matt Gwaltney
Produced by Erin Tobey
Executive Produced by Jim Manion

Interchange – Primary Candidates for Mayor: A Conversation


Host Doug Storm welcomes the primary candidates for Mayor of Bloomington.

Democrats: John Hamilton, John Linnemeier, Darryl Neher
Republican: John Turnbull

Some Topics Discussed: growth and development projects; job creation; minimum wage; tech sector; Party politics; IU Health’s decision to move the hospital out of downtown; city-wide broadband; political appointments.

The Primary Election is Tuesday, May 5th, 2015.

Firehouse Sessions – Glen Hansard


Irish singer-songwriter and bandleader Glen Hansard stopped by for a very special Firehouse Session before a sold-out show at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater. He is best-known for his work with The Frames and the Swell Season, as well as his lead role in the musical film Once, which won the Oscar for Best Original Song. Next month, Hansard releases a tribute EP for late Bloomington musician Jason Molina, and he spoke emotionally about his friendship with Molina and performed the Songs:Ohia song “Hold On, Magnolia.”

1. “Hold On, Magnolia” (Songs:Ohia cover)
2. “Paying My Way”

Hosted and Produced by Katie Moulton
Engineers: Jim Lang, Dan Withered
Executive Producer is Jim Manion

Interchange – The Prick of Noon: Romeo & Juliet


We have two guests with us tonight to discuss the play both as production or performance and as text; the deed and the word. As Harold Goddard said, “Drama is a portrayal of human passions eventuating in acts. Poetry is a picture of life in its essence.” Shakespeare toils to mend the two.

In Act One, “The Play’s the Thing,” we’re joined by the director of the IU Theater Production of Romeo & Juliet, Nancy Lipschultz to talk about producing the play for the stage.

In Act Two, “The Prick of Noon,” we’re joined by Ellen MacKay, a scholar of early modern English drama and public culture whose approach to the Shakespearean stage is “driven by the epistemological problems that the theatre poses to a culture eager to draw a clear line between artifice and authenticity.” We discuss Shakespeare’s treatment of time.

We don’t need to withhold any plot points tonight as our subject is a play that was written sometime near the end of the 17th century and like all of Shakespeare’s plays is based on a prior text or two. It’s an ancient plot, warring tribes, political enmity in city-states, and even star-crossed lovers: all nothing new. We can even find Dante referencing historical Montagues and Capulets as feuding political parties in the Purgatory of his Divine Comedy.

And so you know, Romeo and Juliet are always dead before we even begin. It is the outcome that begs a reason why and the play begins with the Prologue giving up our ghosts.

Producer & Host: Doug Storm
Board Engineer: Jonathan Richardson
Social Media: Carissa Barrett
Executive Producer: Joe Crawford

Activate! – Global Gifts: Mary Megan Walker


Mary Megan Walker on her service learning and volunteering with Global Gifts and Fair Trade Bloomington. Also, volunteer opportunities from the City of Bloomington Volunteer Network.

Global Gifts
My Sister’s Closet
Opportunity House

Local Live – Chainsaw Mondays


On this week’s Local Live, Chainsaw Mondays rocks us the folk out with their unique blend of rock n’ roll, blistering horns and lyrical wit.

Chainsaw Mondays is:
Tim Baker: Electric guitar and vocals
Michael Pruitt: Bass
Scott Currie: Drums
Aaron Comforty: Trumpet
Ben Fowler: Baritone Sax

1. Country Blues No. 2
2. Water Dries
3. Door on a Roof
4. Bridge
5. Moving uptown
6. One More Time

Hosted by Jar Turner
Engineered by Jim Lang, Dan Withered, Adam Reichle, and Matt Gwaltney
Produced by Erin Toby
Executive Producer is Jim Manion

Firehouse Sessions – The Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band


The Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band had the whole WFHB building shaking with their foot stomping country blues rave up. Playing three songs off their brand new album “So Delicious” they took us from the happy (Pot Roast and Kisses) to the angry (Scream At the Night) to the boastful and blistering (Front Porch Trained). These Brown County ambassadors of hot licks and ear to ear smiles gave us the perfect primer not only for the new album, but also the six month long world tour they’re about to embark on.

The Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band is Reverend Peyton, Breezy Peyton, Ben Bussell

1. Pot Roast and Kisses
2. Scream At The Night
3. Front Porch Trained

Hosted by: Mat Alano-Martin
Engineered by: Jim Lang, Dan Withered
Producer: Katie Moulton
Executive Producer: Jim Manion

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