Discoveries on Europa Help Scientists Examine Planets

by Theodore Morrison, age 14

Right now, one of Jupiter's moons, Europa, is orbiting the largest planet in the solar system. This moon contains an ocean underneath its surface. This ice sheet massing across Europa will be used by scientists and other researchers to determine if the -260 degree Fahrenheit moon could sustain life.

NASA’s Hubble Telescope has revealed water vapor being exclusive to one hemisphere of Europa, which is irregular. This condition is one that scientists hope to exploit in order to determine how other planets, similar to the moon, host ice on their surfaces or below.

There is also evidence to suggest the water vapor has been present for an extended amount of time. This evidence stems from observations conducted by the Hubble Space Telescope between 1999 and 2015. In addition, the vapor is present exclusively in the tail-end of Europa’s orbit, meaning the hemisphere facing away from the direction of orbit. This evidence gives researchers and scientists several answers but probably also raises several more questions. [read more]

Scientists Model the Human Face of the Future

by Santiago Rosero Perea, age 11

Scientists in Denmark, with the help of technology, have developed predictions on what the face of a human being could look like in the future.

The faces of the neanderthals in prehistoric times were very different from those of today's humans. Recently, a group of paleontologists in Denmark broadcasted photos and a video with images of the bones of a prehistoric woman. They created a model of how that Neolithic mother could have looked, they also found bones of an eight year old boy. The scientific community has made many efforts to find out what the face of a neanderthal actually looked like.

Following research on neanderthals, scientists and computer experts worked hand in hand with the BBC company to hypothesize what the human face will look like in a million years. A group from the University of Aarhus, in Denmark, designed a model of what the human face could look like in a million years. The BBC company is working on a project to artificially modify human organs as well. [read more]

Scientists Discover 8th Continent Underwater

by Emily Bautista, age 13

We have been taught that there are only seven continents on Earth but in reality, there are eight. The eighth continent’s name is Zealandia.

Zealandia covers about 2 million-square-miles, however it is mostly underwater – 95 percent of its land mass being overflowed. Zealandia is about half the size of Australia and 3,500 feet under the Pacific Ocean, leaving around six percent above sea level. Zealandia is found east of Australia and is approximately 5 million square kilometers away from New Zealand.

You may be asking “when did this mysterious eighth continent come to be and how have I never heard of it?” Most people don't know it exists because the eighth continent does not appear on most maps. It was also recently discovered by scientists in the 1990s and officially became a continent in 2017. Scientists from New Zealand are now planning to increase public awareness of the continent. [read more]

Hubble Telescope Explore Another Giant Red Spot on Jupiter

by Giovanni Tecuatl, age 17

Did you know that storms form in places other than on Planet Earth? NASA has studied storms on planets in our Solar System for many years. And NASA continues to study large storms on Jupiter. In August of 2020, NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope captured images of another giant storm on the surface of Jupiter. Scientists refer to this area of storms as “Red Spot Junior.”

Jupiter is known as the “Monster Planet” due to its large size and turbulent atmosphere. While the pictures were being taken, NASA found that new storms were brewing on Jupiter and that the planet’s famous Great Red Spot region was preparing to change color once again.

The Hubble Space Telescope also captured another intriguing image of Jupiter. At around its mid-northern latitudes, Hubble located a bright white, and stretched-out storm traveling at around 350 mph. During this time, ground-based observers had also identified two more storms in the same region. [read more]

Scientists Discover a New Genus of Tarantulas

by Max Moreno, age 9

The Bambootula was found in early January 2022. This spider is located in northern Thailand. Its scientific name is Taksinus Bambus, also known as Bambootula. This spider gets its unique name from the bamboo stems where it makes its home. Scientists say that this is the first time in 104 years that a person has found a new genus in Asia.

This spider lives in bamboo because it serves as a safe place to hide from predators. The spider can not make holes in the bamboo stem itself, so it finds one that is getting eaten or one that breaks naturally. When the spider is inside, it makes a retreat hole from silk to keep it secure and also help it move around.

This spider was found by a wildlife youtuber named JoCho Sippawat. Sippawat was cutting bamboo in the forest close to his house when the spider fell off a bamboo stem. Sippawat showed a picture of the spider to Narin Chomphuphuang, a biologist who studies spiders at Khon Kaen University in Thailand. As soon as Chomphuphuang and other scientists saw the picture, they knew right away that this was a new spider species. [read more]

Lisa Byington Makes History as Basketball's First Female Play-by-Play Announcer

by Josepha Da Costa, age 17

While the Milwaukee Bucks came up short in this year’s playoffs, it was still a great season. The team won its division, defeated the Chicago Bulls in a five-game playoff series, and once again excited Wisconsin basketball fans.

The team made another move during the season that got less notice. The Milwaukee Bucks hired a new TV announcer.

The first female National Basketball Association (NBA) full time play-by-play announcer was hired just before the season started – in Milwaukee. Lisa Byington, former athlete-turned-sports announcer, was hired by the team in September. Byington made history with the Milwaukee Bucks, replacing their retired long-time broadcaster Jim Paschke. [read more]

$2 Million Project Plans to Add 21.7 Acres to Whitetail Ridge Park

by Sol-Saray, age 10

Have you heard about the $2 million project in place to expand the parks on Madison's Northside?

The mayor of Madison, Satya Rhodes-Conway, and office officials Syed Abbas and Charles Myadze, are planning to expand Whitetail Ridge Park. They plan to buy 21.7 acres of land that is currently owned by Cherokee Park inc. This purchase will cost the city $2.1 million.

Whitetail Ridge Park is located right off of North Sherman avenue. The 9.55 acre neighborhood park includes a river, playground, basketball court, and a soccer field. The additional land will add new landscape features to the park and will help form a system of parks. “It expands Whitetail Ridge Park in an area of growing population, and protects 20 acres of high-quality urban forest, in close proximity to Cherokee Marsh Conservation Park and will offer future recreation opportunities for trails, hiking, bird-watching and nature enjoyment,” said Eric Knepp, park superintendent. [read more]

New School in Fitchburg Uses Green Energy Technology

by Devika Pal, age 16

Forest Edge Elementary School in Fitchburg is the first Net Zero Energy school in Wisconsin.

The school opened in September of 2021, and is part of the Oregon School district. The district’s Superintendent Dr. Leslie Bergstrom said the school’s goal is to create “the best design for student learning that also incorporated technologies to efficiently use and conserve energy.”

The school has implemented innovative features such as an electrochromic glass that tints exterior windows to gain natural sunlight; geothermal wells that heat and cool the school efficiently, and therefore reduce the amount of energy used. The school also has a 125kW battery that produces and stores excess energy, which can then be sold back to utilities and can be added to a grid. The building does not use any natural gas. [read more]

Conservation Fund Purchases Pelican River Forest

by Kelly Vazquez, age 17

After two years of negotiation, the Conservation Fund (CF) of Wisconsin has purchased an estimated 70 thousand acres of forest land and named it the Pelican River Forest. The expected outcome is to preserve these lands for public use—such as hunting, fishing, trapping, and logging—and obtain easements to permanently protect them against development. This way CF can support the economy of the area while still providing protection for the forest.

This is not the Conservation Fund’s first time performing a similar project. In 2015, CF bought the Brule-St. Croix Legacy Forest. It contains 65.8 thousand acres of land, which have been protected since its initial purchase. This has been done for over 113 thousand acres of land since 2001.

Their recent purchase resides mainly in the County of Oneida, near the Mississippi River and Great Lakes. It has 27 thousand acres of forested wetlands—or swamps—68 miles of river, and hardwood forested uplands. It provides habitat to many animals, such as black bears, wolves, deer, bald eagles, and spruce grouse. [read more]

Annual Martin Luther King, Jr “I Have a Dream” Event Supports Local Scholarships

by Josepha Da Costa, age 16

The annual “I Have a Dream” Ball is scheduled for January 15, 2022. This year’s event will again take place virtually. As always, the I Have Dream Ball will raise money to fund scholarships for local high school seniors and college students. And, as always, this cherished Madison tradition is organized and sponsored by the dedicated volunteers of Women in Focus.

My name is Josepha Da Costa and I am a junior at La Follette High School. I am also a teen editor at Simpson Street Free Press. I have attended the Women in Focus Ball with my Simpson Street colleagues several times over the years going back to when I was in 6th grade.

This event is something we look forward to every year. While last year’s Ball was also virtual, it still felt good to participate and support the cause of local education. People sometimes forget how difficult it is these days to afford higher education. As a high school junior, I’m just now realizing how expensive college can be. It’s not just getting to college, qualifying and getting accepted, today it is also about figuring out how to pay for it. [read more]

An Epidemic of Overdoses: Synthetic Fentanyl Causes Dramatic Increase in Opioid Addiction

by Sydney Steidl, age 15

In 2020 alone, 93,331 people in the United States died from drug overdoses, a 30% increase from the previous year and the highest number on record.

“I can remember thinking 30,000 was an astounding number, now we’re three times that. It’s crazy,” says Dr. Robert Anderson with the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics.

One cause for this escalation in overdoses is a recent spike in the availability and use of fentanyl, a synthetic opioid 50 times the strength of heroin. Use of the drug was on the rise in 2019, partly from increasingly being laced into other drugs sold to unaware users. Deaths from overdoses increased again in 2020, with many experts citing the Covid-19 pandemic. [read more]

Dane County and City of Fitchburg will Host “Clean Sweep” Event to Help Families Dispose of Household Chemicals

by Alan Cruz, age 17

Many people are concerned about chemical waste and byproducts polluting our natural environment. So, it’s good to know there is something close to home we can do about it. “Clean Sweep” is a local effort that helps dispose of common household chemicals.

On Saturday, October 23, the City of Fitchburg will partner with Dane County, the Madison Area Municipal Storm Water Partnership, and the Madison Metropolitan Sewerage District to help Dane County residents dispose of household hazardous waste. The event will take place from 8am to noon at 5955 McKee Rd in the parking lot behind Oak Bank.

Household chemicals and other items that pose potential environmental risks can be difficult to get rid of safely. And yet most households use cleaning products and other chemicals that eventually need to be disposed of. These kinds of products should not be placed in recycling bins or curbside trash. [read more]

Massive Ship Catches Fire in Sri Lanka!

by Allison Torres, age 12

Recently, a large container ship, the X-Press Pearl, caught on fire and sank off the coast of Sri Lanka and filled its west coast beaches with oil and plastic debris. The ship, based in Singapore, was carrying cosmetics and chemicals, including some substances that are very harmful to the environment.

The ship contained tons of oil and tiny plastic pellets, which are harmful to marine life because they release microplastic fragments into the water. When the ship caught on fire and remained on fire for multiple days, it released these substances into the water and onto nearby beaches. Chemicals and cosmetics are washing up onto the beach of Negombo, a place with a lot of tourism.

The navy of Sri Lanka and the Indian navy along with other experts tried to clean the waters near the ship. The navy wanted to move the ship further into the sea so it didn’t affect the fishing in the town, as it is their main source of food. Soldiers started cleaning operations on the beaches, but, unfortunately the ship sank as it was being towed out to sea, which makes the ongoing cleanup efforts more difficult. [read more]

Deidre Green Hired as Assistant Principal
at Madison’s Capital High School

by Samuel Garduno, age 14

The Madison Metropolitan School District has appointed four new assistant principals at schools around the city. Among the four new assistant principals is Deidre Green, a former student and managing editor at Simpson Street Free Press. Green was recently hired at Capital High School.

In the sixth grade, Deidre Green began writing at Simpson Street. During her years at the Free Press, she worked her way up the ranks to become managing editor. As a student writer, Green recalled the most impactful experiences being the teaching she received from editors, especially Betty Kramer, a local volunteer.

“[Betty] would help me and spend time with me on grammar because I was really bad, I didn't know a lot of the grammar rules,” explained Green in an interview with current Simpson Street reporters. [read more]

Electronic Vehicle Manufacturer Will Partner with UW Madison on New Research Center

by Alan Cruz, age 17

The California electric vehicle (EV) startup manufacturer, Canoo, is partnering with The University of Wisconsin–Madison to establish an on-campus research center, which will be dedicated to EV technology research and development. Additionally, they’re making EV more available while lowering the usage of natural resources in production.

In a statememen, UW-Madison's associate dean for research, Oliver Schmitz, said that he intends to work with Canoo over the next six months to solidify the research center’s funding, design and staffing.

Tony Aquila, chairman and CEO of Canoo, claimed that university-based research will boost the new and expanding EV market and make American manufacturers more competitive. [read more]

The Public’s Right to Know: Fewer Beat Reporters Covering Education Issues

by Moises A. Hernandez, age 16

The number of professional journalists covering the education beat has gone down. Across the United States more education reporters are retiring, taking buyouts, or being terminated.

The reshuffling of education journalists is not new and is often a natural progression of the news and media business. Some beat reporters join investigative teams, move to education-specific platforms, or change their reporting focus. It’s fairly common for smaller media platforms, born in the last decade or so, to attract veteran journalists. And of course, some employees move to journalism jobs outside of traditional newsrooms.

Notable departures from the education beat include Ann Doss Helms, an education reporter for the Charlotte Observer. Helms recently announced she would take a buyout after 16 years on the beat. [read more]

PFAS Contaminate Groundwater Near Dane County Airport

by Gabriella Shell, age 14

Recent tests have revealed extremely high levels of dangerous contaminants called PFAS in the groundwater near former firefighting training grounds at the Dane County Regional Airport.

The Environmental Protection Agency recommends no more than 70 parts per trillion (ppt) of PFAS in drinking water, an environmental contractor hired by the Dane County Airport found an excess of 68,000 ppt in groundwater at a site along Darwin Road. Another site, near Pearson Street, had PFAS levels over 20,000 ppt.

These two sites were used as firefighter training grounds in the 1950s through the 1980s, and are known as “burn pits.” The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources attributed the contamination at these sites to Dane County, the City of Madison, and the Wisconsin Air National Guard. [read more]

Apple's Efforts to Curb Child Labor Fall Short

by Yoanna Hoskins, age 15

Apple is a huge multimillion dollar electronics company that sells myriad devices ranging from phones, to Macbooks, to operating systems. Over the years, it has had major partnerships with many different companies.

However, despite Apple’s worldwide reputation, recent reports have highlighted the company’s troubling ties with suppliers that rely on child labor as well as ignoring poor working conditions. According to Business Insider, “Apple discovered that Suyin Electronics, one of its Chinese-based suppliers, relied on child labor on multiple occasions, but still took three years to fully cut ties.”

Although Apple was aware of Suyin’s poor treatment of its workers, Apple refused to take action for fear of hurting profits. Both Suyin and Apple were reluctant to speak to the press about this issue. [read more]

Wisconsin Mink Ranches Battle Coronavirus Outbreak

by Dyami Rodriguez, age 15

COVID-19 is not just a human problem. Recently, at a farm in Sheboygan Falls, Wisconsin, over 3,400 mink died from coronavirus in a one month period.

These deaths were confirmed beginning early October of 2020, when Wisconsin State Veterinarian Dr. Darlene Konkle reported that a couple hundred mink on the farm had died from the virus. Much like humans, the mink were immediately quarantined to try to contain the spread.

Months later they are still in quarantine and they are constantly tested to determine when it can end. [read more]

Flying Car Prototype Makes Successful Test Flight in Japan

by Amare Smith, age 16

Futuristic movies often feature flying cars, but the cars could become a reality shortly. A Japanese company named SkyDrive has been working to make our dreams come true.

SkyDrive recently gave a demonstration of its newest model, called the SD-03. The car lifted itself up from the ground for four minutes using its batteries and eight motors.

“This was special as only a handful of projects have succeeded with a person on board”, says Tomohiro Fukuzawa, SkyDrive’s chief executive. [read more]

As Weather Warms, Dane County Park Officials
Urge Public to Avoid Muddy Areas

by Alan Cruz, age 16

During the next few weeks, Dane County Parks staff will watch park facilities closely. Winter-spring transitions can lead to damage in county parks. Warm temperatures and rain pull frost from the earth during the spring thaw. This causes trails, dog-parks, and grassy areas to get muddy and soft.

A recent press release warns park guests that some county parks or sections of parks might be temporarily shut down over the next few weeks.  

Due to the closure of these parks and facilities, County staff requests that park visitors to remain on hard paths and roads. Understanding the value of outdoor recreational spaces for the community, staff wants people to know that “the spring thaw period combined with high use can have long-term impacts, especially on hiking trails.” [read more]

COVID-19 “Slide” Will Target Vulnerable Students

by Leilani McNeal, 15, and Leila Fletcher, 18

No question about it, a worldwide pandemic changed the 2020 school year. What’s so far unclear, according to new research, is the fallout. Many education experts say the fallout will be very bad, especially for America’s most vulnerable students.

The 2020 school year played out in new and different circumstances. COVID-19 caused school districts around the country to close buildings and pivot where possible to remote learning. And for a number of reasons this causes new concerns among parents and educators. [read more]

Dane County Land Purchase Expands Indian Lake County Park

by Josepha Da Costa, age 15

Recently, Dane County Board adopted a resolution that expands Indian Lake County Park. The resolution authorizes the purchase of 295 acres of land, which will be added to the park. This expansion makes Indian Lake County Park one of the biggest parks in Dane County.

“Indian Lake County Park is one of Dane County’s most popular parks, and it has seen even more visitors this year as a result of more people heading outdoors during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said County Executive, Joe Parisi, who signed the resolution. “This purchase will allow Dane County to enhance the park’s year-round outdoor offerings and make it the largest recreational park in our system.”

With the new purchase the park now spans 800 acres of land. During the pandemic, there has been an increase in visitors to the well-known park. The Indian Lake County park offers areas for activities like fishing and picnicking, also including a dog park.  [read more]

UW-Madison Women’s Basketball Announces Talented Recruits

by Josepha Da Costa, age 15

After the disappointment of last season’s interruption at UW-Madison, due to Covid-19, the Badgers Women’s basketball team has announced exciting news for the Madison community. Two new players have committed to the recruiting class of 2021: Krystyna Ellew and Sacia Vanderpool.

Ranked No. 104 in the nation by the All-Star Girls Report, 5-foot-10 Krystyna Ellew is a point guard from Chicago Taft. Holding the school’s record of 58 points in a single game, Ellew broke Taft’s record and quickly turned into their leading scorer. During her junior year, she ultimately averaged 22.8 points. [read more]

Anthology Owners Believe in Giving Back to the Community

by Kadjata Bah, age 15

There is no denying the importance of the arts in our city, with murals lining streets and buildings, art fairs, museums, and the artists that make it all possible. Two of those artists, Sachi and Laura Komai, can be found at their paper and craft shop, Anthology.

Founded in 2008, Anthology is a space created to facilitate creativity and invite people to explore what creativity means to them. Both Laura and Sachi are artists themselves. [read more]

Former Badger Star Tamara Moore Named Head Coach of Men’s Basketball at College in Minnesota

by Yani Thoronka, age 15

Former Wisconsin Badger basketball star and WNBA player Tamara Moore is the new head coach of the men’s basketball team at Mesabi Range College in Minnesota. Mesabi Range is a small community college in Virginia, Minnesota, located about 70 miles northwest of Duluth.

Moore announced her acceptance of the job through social media platforms and expressed excitement about her new position. She also acknowledged that being one of the few women to run a men’s college basketball program makes her a pioneer and gives her a chance to pave a way forward for other women in the profession. [read more]

Wisconsin Journalist Eugene Kane Fought for his Community

by Leilani McNeal, age 15

Longtime Milwaukee Journal Sentinel columnist Eugene Kane unexpectedly passed away this month. He was 63. 

As a Black man, Kane served as a voice for the voiceless. Dedicated to fighting the good fight and challenging conventional ideas on humanitarian grounds, Kane demonstrated courage and sensitivity through his writing. Because of these attributes, he was a two-time National Headliner Award winner for Best Local Column, hosted the Milwaukee Public Television show “Black Nouveau,” and earned a Knight Fellowship at Stanford University.  [read more]

Adidas Plans to Greatly Reduce Plastic Use

by Makya Rodriguez, age 14

By 2050, experts believe that there will be more plastic than fish in the sea. Adidas is working to reduce the amount of plastic before it reaches the ocean. Adidas plans to replace all virgin polyester with recycled polyester.

Adidas partnered with Parley For The Ocean, an environmental organization, which will support them by turning marine pollution into sportswear. [read more]

Young Citizen Scientists Help Protect Our Water

by Desteny Alvarez, age 15

Wisconsin has a good history of clean water. Now, science experiments with clean water and the ability to validate policies are drawing the attention of parents, teachers, and students across the state. Kevin Anderson, president of the Council of State Science Supervisors, and Travis Tangen, WARF education and outreach manager and also project creator of the Wisconsin Science Festival, created a project where young people could help protect water. The project and students, experiment, were presented at the Wisconsin Annual Science Festival that was held in October.

The Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction supported the statewide water program to get the youth to work with scientists so they could learn more about clean water in Wisconsin. Students worked with groups like The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources(DNR), the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Freshwater Science Center, and the Wisconsin Sea Grant Institution. Another project goal is to get younger generations excited about science. [read more]

Humans Go Nuts for Acorns, but Squirrels Go Hungry

by Dyami Rodriguez, age 14

South Korea has a problem, and it involves squirrels. Acorns are being taken from parks and forests for human consumption, and it’s negatively affecting the squirrels. According to experts, each individual squirrel needs to bury more than 100 acorns to survive the winter.

The population of squirrels has decreased by about 30 percent in the past decade, according to a 2018 wildlife report by South Korea’s National Institute of Biological Resources. This all began when researchers announced that an acorn is a “superfood” that can help battle obesity and diabetes. [read more]

Analogue Pocket Plays Game Boy Games

by Amare Smith, age 15

Hey! There’s a new type of Game Boy device that plays original Game Boy Games! It’s called the “Analogue Pocket.”

The Analogue Pocket is a new handheld releasing in the 2020’s. It will cost $200, there will also be different designs, it has a screen with better quality, and it has stereo speakers that’ll be useful for an audio editing app that will be installed called “Nanoloop”.

The Handheld’s software has the ability to recreate the original hardware of the Game Boy console. This allows players to experience the original game. [read more]

Recent News Articles

The humble bumble bee may be small in size but its influence on our environment is huge. But one bee in particular, the rusty patched bumble bee, is now on the federal Endangered Species list. This bee is native to Wisconsin and other areas of the upper Midwest. Over the past two decades, rusty patched bees have decreased by 90%. Very few of them are found roaming in backyards these days. [read more...]
News collecting and reporting has changed a lot in the 21st century. American newspapers laid off at least 45% of newsroom staff between 2008 and 2017. About 1,800 print news outlets shut down between 2004 and 2015. It’s an overlooked crisis in modern American news, one that’s resulted in a massive loss of local news outlets. [read more...]
Last July, a new population of the invasive plant called the European frog-bit was found in Oconto, near Lake Michigan. Although this species is common in the coastal areas of Lakes Erie and Huron, its origins are in Europe and parts of Asia and Africa. The first spotting of the European frog-bit in Wisconsin was at a nursery in 2018, and it was seen again in 2021 in Oconto. It’s assumed that the plant was transferred by long-distance boats, or from aquariums, where it is used decoratively. [read more...]
Have you heard about the $2 million project in place to expand the parks on Madison's Northside? The mayor of Madison, Satya Rhodes-Conway, and office officials Syed Abbas and Charles Myadze, are planning to expand Whitetail Ridge Park. They plan to buy 21.7 acres of land that is currently owned by Cherokee Park inc. This purchase will cost the city $2.1 million. [read more...]
In 2020 alone, 93,331 people in the United States died from drug overdoses, a 30% increase from the previous year and the highest number on record. [read more...]
The annual “I Have a Dream” Ball is scheduled for January 15, 2022. This year’s event will again take place virtually. As always, the I Have Dream Ball will raise money to fund scholarships for local high school seniors and college students. And, as always, this cherished Madison tradition is organized and sponsored by the dedicated volunteers of Women in Focus. [read more...]
Recently, a large container ship, the X-Press Pearl, caught on fire and sank off the coast of Sri Lanka and filled its west coast beaches with oil and plastic debris. The ship, based in Singapore, was carrying cosmetics and chemicals, including some substances that are very harmful to the environment. [read more...]
The Department of Homeland Security wants to hire private companies to analyze public social media data. Biden administration officials say the attack on the U.S. Capitol on January 6th warrants the additional surveillance. But concerns regarding privacy and civil liberties have triggered heated debates about social media. [read more...]
Many people are concerned about chemical waste and byproducts polluting our natural environment. So, it’s good to know there is something close to home we can do about it. “Clean Sweep” is a local effort that helps dispose of common household chemicals. [read more...]
Regular readers of Simpson Street Free Press know we are big fans of Indian Lake County Park. This is one of the largest and most popular parks in the Dane County system. And now you can support this wonderful place, visit the park during beautiful fall weather, and have fun all at the same time. [read more...]
The Madison Metropolitan School District has appointed four new assistant principals at schools around the city. Among the four new assistant principals is Deidre Green, a former student and managing editor at Simpson Street Free Press. Green was recently hired at Capital High School. [read more...]
The purchase of a 465-megawatt solar and storage plant for Dane County is being considered by three Wisconsin utilities. Two months ago, Invenergy, a Chicago-based power company, submitted an application for a permit to build a 2,400-acre project in the villages of Christiana and Deerfield, Wisconsin. The companies hope to start power generation by the end of 2024, if the application is successful. Construction on the project, known as Koshkonong Solar, would start next year. [read more...]
In July the International Swimming Federation (FINA) made a statement. FINA prohibited using in competition a type of swimming cap specifically designed for natural black hair. [read more...]
The California electric vehicle (EV) startup manufacturer, Canoo, is partnering with The University of Wisconsin–Madison to establish an on-campus research center, which will be dedicated to EV technology research and development. Additionally, they’re making EV more available while lowering the usage of natural resources in production. [read more...]
Over 1,200 gallons of petroleum were spilled from an underground pipeline leak near Fort Atkinson, Wisconsin, in Spring of 2019, yet regulators were not notified for nearly a year and a half. [read more...]
One might wonder what possible connections there could be between child labor, Girl Scout cookies, and two girls on opposite sides of the world. The connection, as it turns out, is palm oil. [read more...]
Egyptian authorities have released two journalists who spent more than a year in pre-trial detention. Defense attorneys told Associated Press reporters that Solafa Magdy and her husband Hossam el-Sayyad are staying with family members at their home in Cairo. Magdy is a multimedia reporter and el-Sayyad is a photographer. [read more...]
The number of professional journalists covering the education beat has gone down. Across the United States more education reporters are retiring, taking buyouts, or being terminated. [read more...]
Ebony Magazine has been creating safe and productive spaces for Black/African American people for over 75 years. While existing as paper copy for the entirety of its existence, Ebony has decided to rebrand itself to a solely online platform. This shift was executed because CEO of the magazine, Michele Ghee, thought it better suited the current times. [read more...]
COVID-19 is not just a human problem. Recently, at a farm in Sheboygan Falls, Wisconsin, over 3,400 mink died from coronavirus in a one month period. [read more...]
Wisconsin’s gray wolf population increased by 13 percent in one year according to a survey conducted by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) between April 2019 and April 2020. This growth is attributed to the protections put in place by the federal Endangered Species Act in 1974. That rapid growth led to gray wolves being removed from the federal endangered species list in late 2020. [read more...]
Recent tests have revealed extremely high levels of dangerous contaminants called PFAS in the groundwater near former firefighting training grounds at the Dane County Regional Airport. [read more...]
Apple is a huge multimillion dollar electronics company that sells myriad devices ranging from phones, to Macbooks, to operating systems. Over the years, it has had major partnerships with many different companies. [read more...]
During the next few weeks, Dane County Parks staff will watch park facilities closely. Winter-spring transitions can lead to damage in county parks. Warm temperatures and rain pull frost from the earth during the spring thaw. This causes trails, dog-parks, and grassy areas to get muddy and soft. [read more...]
Futuristic movies often feature flying cars, but the cars could become a reality shortly. A Japanese company named SkyDrive has been working to make our dreams come true. [read more...]
The annual “I Have a Dream” Scholarship Ball is a unique and cherished Madison tradition. Sponsored each year by the dedicated volunteers of Women in Focus, this event raises money that goes directly to local young people and helps them afford the always difficult costs of higher education. For that reason alone, this is one of the most important events in our community. [read more...]
According to research at the National Wildlife Health Center (NWHC) here in Madison, big-brown bats, a species common in North America, are immune to coronavirus infections that cause COVID-19. Although 40 other bat species in North America were not tested, the research alleviates worries that wild bats in the continent may be contaminated by humans or spread the SARS-CoV-2 virus to other species. [read more...]
Recently, Dane County Board adopted a resolution that expands Indian Lake County Park. The resolution authorizes the purchase of 295 acres of land, which will be added to the park. This expansion makes Indian Lake County Park one of the biggest parks in Dane County. [read more...]
Four years. Five phases. Six sites. That’s the scope of the $10-15 million Yahara River Sediment Removal Project, part of Dane County’s ongoing flood mitigation effort. It is an ambitious project that aims to cut in half the amount of time it takes for water to travel through the Yahara watershed. [read more...]
Madison school officials plan significant changes in reading and literacy instruction. District administrators presented the proposed changes to school board members at a recent Board of Education meeting and signaled a shift toward phonics and the science of reading. [read more...]
Thanksgiving morning in 2019 was very cold. But for me, it ended up being heartwarming. Along with several of my Simpson Street Free Press colleagues, I made the trek to Fitchburg. We were not there for turkey--that was still in the oven. Rather we were there to volunteer for the Berbee Derby, a 10-kilometer race that winds its way through Fitchburg every Thanksgiving morning. Even though I spent much of the time wrapped in a warm blanket, I still got to participate and help out. And I still got to have fun. [read more...]
Maty Wilke, a 5-foot-10 guard from Beaver Dam recently committed to the University of Wisconsin Women’s basketball program. Wilke announced her decision to the UW coach Jonathan Tsipis over a facetime call in August. [read more...]
Chemicals that can be found in firefighting foam--and tools we use every day--heighten the risk for diseases like cancer. Due to this, Wisconsin has now started to limit the effect of these chemicals in our environment by restricting their use. New rules are being drafted by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) to control their use and are expected to be put in place in September. [read more...]
The StoryWalk™ Project was initiated by Anne Ferguson, a chronic disease prevention specialist from Monterpelier, Vermont, in 2007. She wanted to find a way to encourage both kids and adults to be more active, which is very important to chronic illness prevention. She then launched StoryWalk, which is “an innovative and delightful way for children — and adults! — to enjoy reading and the outdoors at the same time.” Since 2007, StoryWalk has been installed in 50 states and 12 countries. The latest local installment is here at the Lussier Family Heritage Center in William G. Lunney Lake Farm County Park. [read more...]
Do want to learn more about how seeds travel and at the same time help restore natural areas in our beautiful Dane County Parks? [read more...]
Due to Covid-19, people are spending a lot more time at home. Many are watching Netflix, going on walks, and spending time with family. A good way to pass the time with family is to play classic board games such as Nintendo’s recent video game for the Switch, “Clubhouse Games: 51 Worldwide Classics.” [read more...]
East High School girls’ basketball now has a definite head coach. LaRonda McLin served as the interim coach last season before she was promoted to head coach this past month. The announcement in regards to McLin’s promotion came from East athletic director T.J. Rogness on Thursday, June 18. [read more...]
The world's largest refracting telescope is located at Yerkes Observatory in Williams Bay on Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. It was used by many well-known space researchers in the past. The facility was recently donated to the Yerkes Future Foundation by the University of Chicago. The foundation has plans to refurbish the 123-year-old facility, and hope to have it open to the public as soon as spring 2021. The many refurbishments will improve research capabilities and the very structure itself. [read more...]
Does the murder hornet abide by its name? Is it deadly? This new insect entered the United States in December of 2019. It is also known by its native name, the Asian giant hornet. These hornets are the largest in the world. However, they are not as deadly as their name may imply. [read more...]
The largest academic college at UW-Madison recently picked its new dean. Eric Wilcots is an astronomer and the first African American to oversee the College of Letters and Science. He has been interim dean since last year and will continue to be responsible for a 365 million budget, around 20,000 students, and more than 800 faculty members. Wilcots also oversee UW-Madison’s new School of Computer, Data and Information Sciences. [read more...]
Most black bears in Wisconsin are found in the central or northern parts of the state. However, people on social media have been following a black bear, known as Bruno, who has made an impressive trek from Wisconsin to Missouri in a month by himself. [read more...]
Ticket sales were booming this year for the University of Wisconsin-Madison Women’s basketball. They averaged an all-time high of 1,642 tickets scanned during their 15 regular-season games, which is a 6 percent increase from last year’s 2018-19 season. [read more...]
After the disappointment of last season’s interruption at UW-Madison, due to Covid-19, the Badgers Women’s basketball team has announced exciting news for the Madison community. Two new players have committed to the recruiting class of 2021: Krystyna Ellew and Sacia Vanderpool. [read more...]
No question about it, a worldwide pandemic changed the 2020 school year. What’s so far unclear, according to new research, is the fallout. Many education experts say the fallout will be very bad, especially for America’s most vulnerable students. [read more...]
There is no denying the importance of the arts in our city, with murals lining streets and buildings, art fairs, museums, and the artists that make it all possible. Two of those artists, Sachi and Laura Komai, can be found at their paper and craft shop, Anthology. [read more...]
    Longtime Milwaukee Journal Sentinel columnist Eugene Kane unexpectedly passed away this month. He was 63.  [read more...]
Former Wisconsin Badger basketball star and WNBA player Tamara Moore is the new head coach of the men’s basketball team at Mesabi Range College in Minnesota. Mesabi Range is a small community college in Virginia, Minnesota, located about 70 miles northwest of Duluth. [read more...]
As states gradually loosen stay-at-home orders, public health officials caution that widespread testing will be critical to safely relaxing social distancing guidelines. Unfortunately, this has been difficult to achieve with the tests available at present. Dr. Deborah Birx, the White House coronavirus response coordinator, said that antigen tests might be “the breakthrough innovation in testing” that the public needs. [read more...]
Negassi Tesfamichael is a former education beat reporter at The Capital Times. We recently had a chance to catch up with Negassi, who is finishing his first year at the Pritzker School of Law at Northwestern University. [read more...]
PFAS, hazardous chemicals found in Madison water wells and bodies of water, are in the news again. New revelations from a group called Midwest Environmental Advocates (MEA) show that Dane County and the Madison Water Utility failed to respond appropriately to open records requests filed in 2019. [read more...]
In a groundbreaking decision, a federal court has recognized “access to literacy” as a fundamental right. The 6th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Thursday that the U.S. Constitution guarantees a right to "a basic minimum education," which lawyers claim starts with basic literacy. [read more...]
The city of Stoughton is thinking about removing their dam on the Yahara River for a redesign project of the riverfront. The goal is to make it cleaner, safer, more attractive, and may also include a whitewater paddling feature. [read more...]
The fight against human trafficking and illegal fishing has gone on for many years. And it’s been getting harder to track these illegal activities. [read more...]
The First Amendment guarantees some of our most basic freedoms as Americans, including freedom of religion, freedom of assembly, freedom of the press, and what we know it for best—freedom of speech. To most of us, this fundamental right seems like a given. But as our world grows beyond what it was when the amendment was conceived, what place does the First Amendment have in our modern lives on and offline? Recently, a U.S. court decided that the social media platform YouTube is not a ‘public forum,’ or a place where everyone’s rights to free speech are protected. This ruling came after a case involving the conservative YouTube channel PragerU. [read more...]
A new group called WI-Care, or Wisconsin Call to Action for Reading Excellence, has jumped into the recent fight concerning reading instruction. [read more...]
Madison school officials will consider hiring an Ohio-based company known for policies that some say hinder the free speech rights of student journalists. Two school board members and Interim Superintendent Jane Belmore met last month with representatives of Ohio-based NEOLA. NEOLA is a policy-writing firm often hired by school districts to write and implement policies for local boards and local administrators. [read more...]
Hey! There’s a new type of Game Boy device that plays original Game Boy Games! It’s called the “Analogue Pocket.” [read more...]
By 2050, experts believe that there will be more plastic than fish in the sea. Adidas is working to reduce the amount of plastic before it reaches the ocean. Adidas plans to replace all virgin polyester with recycled polyester. [read more...]
Wisconsin has a good history of clean water. Now, science experiments with clean water and the ability to validate policies are drawing the attention of parents, teachers, and students across the state. Kevin Anderson, president of the Council of State Science Supervisors, and Travis Tangen, WARF education and outreach manager and also project creator of the Wisconsin Science Festival, created a project where young people could help protect water. The project and students, experiment, were presented at the Wisconsin Annual Science Festival that was held in October. [read more...]
South Korea has a problem, and it involves squirrels. Acorns are being taken from parks and forests for human consumption, and it’s negatively affecting the squirrels. According to experts, each individual squirrel needs to bury more than 100 acorns to survive the winter. [read more...]
In the early 90s, Nintendo and Sony teamed up to create a new video game console. It was called the "Nintendo Playstation", and there's only one prototype left in the world. [read more...]
Precision medicine is very commonly used to treat different types of cancer. Now, thanks to $11 million in new financing, Magdalene Cook, M.D., CEO of Renovacor wants to use precision medicine to treat a fatal heart disease. Cook will lead a charge in gene therapy to treat this rare heart disease. [read more...]
Facebook has been through quite a lot since its humble beginnings in 2004. Allegations of negligence in policing content and ads, interference in the 2016 election using their platform, and a massive privacy scandal are only some of the problems the social media company has encountered. Facebook has impacted online journalism atmosphere in numerous ways. Including a push to promote video content that left news outlets in limbo. [read more...]
On August 2, Wisconsin officials issued a warning telling people to stop vaping after a sudden rise in vaping related illnesses in Wisconsin and Illinois. As of November 13, there have been over 2,000 cases of vaping-related illnesses, and as of November 19, there have been 34 reported deaths throughout the US. This is clearly an issue, especially since we aren’t quite sure what is causing the illnesses. However, this sudden concern about an issue that has only 34 fatalities has led some people to wonder why vaping has drawn so much concern when there are many other teen health issues that haven’t been addressed by the government. [read more...]
In the spring of 2018, Wisconsin was one of 34 states where there was a decline in enrollment for all types of higher education institutions. This is because of the state’s declining birth rate and better post recession economy. The rate of high school graduation will be steady by 2026, and the college graduates are estimated to decrease by 15 percent between 2025 and 2029, reported Nathan Grawe, an economist at Carleton College. [read more...]
New F-35 jets and industrial chemicals known as perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are making headlines in Madison, and in Japan. High levels of carcinogenic chemicals known as PFAS were found in the bloodto of Okinawa residents and in the rivers around the island’s two F-35-hosting U.S. air bases, according to a new study. [read more...]
Most of us consume plenty of good food on Thanksgiving Day. Luckily, Dane County has the perfect balance for all the calories. At the annual Berbee Derby, we can all get some good exercise Thanksgiving morning, and then enjoy the rest of the day with family and friends. [read more...]
Wisconsin has joined a growing list of states pushing to bring cursive lessons back into elementary school classrooms. [read more...]
I’m gonna talk about the new game called “Animal Crossing: New Horizons”. After waiting for an Animal Crossing Game, Nintendo finally released footage of the trailer and revealed the release date. [read more...]
Growing up with two cultures or more is not easy. Often times there are people who pressure you to know more about your culture. There is nothing wrong about learning to connect with your roots. But sometimes the pressure can get overwhelming for those that are Mexican-American. [read more...]
Eight Dane County beaches are plagued with algae blooms. Madison was forced to close its beaches for an extended period of time because of unsatisfactory health inspections. County Executive Joe Parisi and other civic leaders alike finally found an effective way of combating the algae blooms and nutrients. [read more...]
After many months of construction, Madison College’s Goodman South Campus has opened for business and it is doing much better than anyone had hoped. Located in the heart of southern Madison, it seems that the future impact of the new building will far exceed the expectations of many who are involved. [read more...]
Avid readers of Simpson Street Free Press know we love road trips. We often hit the road with our students, sometimes to visit a museum, a historic landmark, or geographic oddity. Most recently, several Free Press writers and staff were invited to speak at the Wisconsin Space Grant Consortium conference at UW-Platteville. [read more...]
There is a new street on the Eastside of Madison to commemorate the world-renowned bassist, Richard Davis. The street bridges Webb Avenue and Darbo Drive, which neighbor the Salvation Army. [read more...]
Madison Area Technical College (MATC) first broke ground on the South Side of Madison over a year ago. Now in this coming week, the college’s new comprehensive Goodman South campus will open, catering to the needs of MATC’s students and the surrounding community. [read more...]
Did you know that there are new mysterious killer whales, called the type D orcas? They look really different from other orcas because they have a rounded head, a small white eye patch, and a pointier dorsal fin. [read more...]
Former Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) star, Lindsey Harding, states that she is changing the NBA game. [read more...]
Enbridge Inc., a Canadian energy transportation company, is facing a federal lawsuit from the Bad River Band of Lake Superior Chippewa. Line 5, a 66-year old pipeline carrying 23 million gallons of oil daily, runs 12 miles through the nation’s Wisconsin reservation. This pipeline is likely to rupture, causing a massive oil spill in the Bad River ecosystem. [read more...]
With climate change posing a threat to human existence, many governments, both international and local, have pursued steps towards sustainable and renewable ways of living. Countless places across the United States have taken action to advocate for environmental practices that reduce the impacts of climate change. [read more...]
Recent studies in Dane County have indicated disparities in infant mortality rates across different racial groups. According to a report by the Dane County Health Council and the Foundation for Black Women’s Wellness, low birth weights, which can lead to greater infant mortality rates, are twice as common for black babies than white babies. [read more...]
Over the decades since Madison College was founded, it has provided an affordable education for thousands of people. In the process, it has become an integral part of Madison’s community. In an endeavor to broaden the availability of Madison College’s resources and classes, Madison College will expand this fall with the completion of the new Goodman South Campus. [read more...]
In 1969, Neil Armstrong uttered the famous words, “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind,” as he took the first steps onto the moon, sparking the interest of millions across the world. [read more...]
Flooding isn’t one of Dane County’s biggest concerns, but there is certainly a risk. [read more...]
Did you know that the Louisiana lobster is illegal to possess or transport in Wisconsin? [read more...]
Brenda Gonzalez has been handpicked as the new director of the community relations at UW-Madison. [read more...]
Super Mario Maker is a Nintendo game where you can build your own levels by adding your own sound effects, characters, and others. [read more...]
Slow internet; taking forever to load? Well, Madison is currently undergoing the early stages of installing a new technology. This technology will enable smartphones to be fast and expanding Madisonians’ access to cellular data. The city is holding public hearings in order to gather the opinions of the people about their upcoming upgrade to their cellular service. [read more...]
Hello, this is Amare and I’m going to talk about a new game that will come out at the summer Olympics, called Mario and Sonic at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020. This game revolves around sports combined with retro game characters. The reason why Nintendo and sega make games about the Olympics is because many people watch the Olympics. The game will be made to increase the audience’s interest for the Olympics. [read more...]
A Madison weather data analytic company, Understory, is planning to expand after receiving $5.25 million in investments. They plan to start this expansion by adding more staff to their other 12 employees in Madison or their five in other cities. [read more...]
The iconic phrase, “That’s one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind,” was said by Neil Armstrong. He became the first man to set foot on the moon as part of the Apollo 11 mission. That was 50 years ago. [read more...]
Climate change is a very pressing issue in our world today. It happens when the climate changes abnormally due to too many fossil fuels being burned at once, releasing large amounts of carbon dioxide gases into the atmosphere. Due to climate change, the earth is slowing burning, causing problems like frequent powerful storms, animals dying off, and abnormal weather. To help stop climate change, the City of Madison has created a program to bring solar energy to communities in need. Solar energy converts energy from the sun into electricity. [read more...]
Do you know what is happening to our waterbodies? Oftentimes unintentionally, boaters are starting to contaminate our waters with animals and plants that belong to foreign waters. As a boat travels, many small species stick to the bottom of the boat and to other boating equipment, bringing them to local waters. This is causing damage. [read more...]
Have you ever seen an albino panda? In China, it was spotted on camera in a bamboo forest. [read more...]
Giannis Antetokoumpo was born on December 6, 1994, in Sepolia, Athens, a city in Greece. Although he was born in Greece, Giannis was not given Greek citizenship. His parents were undocumented, and Greece doesn’t have birthright citizenship. [read more...]
BIOLIFE4D is one of the few innovative companies working to develop biotechnology (biotech). This growing industry has a focus on using biological processes for commercial business. However, it also has the potential to help a lot of patients, including those suffering from heart disease, one of the leading causing of death globally. Biotech uses procedures most commonly involving “genetic manipulations of microorganisms.” BIOLIFE4D plans to manipulate blood cells in order to successfully create a functioning 4D bioprinted heart that will eventually be transplanted into a patient. [read more...]
Hey, guys! This is Amare! And I’m gonna talk about the nintendo game “Super Mario Sunshine for the GameCube Console. ” Mario’s vacation dreams are immediately cut short after landing at the Island’s Airstrip. [read more...]
The Sierra Nevada Corp. recently completed a 20-million-dollar facility on the site of the former Badger Army Ammunition plant near Baraboo. SNC’s goal is to test rocket engines in hope of making it an all-state division. [read more...]
Hey, this is Amare, and I’m gonna talk about Mario Sports Mix! Mario Sports Mix is a combination of Mario Kart and Wii Party. The video game was released by Nintendo worldwide in early 2011, although in Japan, it was released in November 2010. [read more...]
The oldest public library in Germany, built almost 2,000 years ago, was discovered in the middle of Cologne, Germany, a small 2,000-year-old city on the Rhine River. Cologne is one of Germany’s oldest cities was founded by the Romans in 50 AD under the name Colonia. [read more...]
After miners in the Beta Hunt Mine, Southwestern Australia, set off some explosives, they found lots of gold everywhere. The miners had to water the gold because everything was covered in dirt. There was so much gold that it took hours to pick it up. [read more...]
A group comprised mostly of freshman from Madison West High School is set to compete in the International Paris Air show in late June. The team’s goal? To send three large eggs 856 feet into the air, and to bring them back down in a safe and uncracked landing. [read more...]
Wisconsin, as a state, has made great progress towards phosphorus reduction. However, despite the efforts of farmers, government officials, and community members alike, there has been little to show for it. The lakes are still muddy, phosphorus levels remain high, and toxic blue-green algae continues to flourish. County officials believe this is because there is a previously ignored source of phosphorus: legacy sediments. [read more...]
In early 2018 an unlikely visitor touched down in the Sahara Desert—a snowstorm. [read more...]
At a pivotal time in college admissions, when celebrities cheat their children’s way into top-tier universities and Harvard’s reputation is under siege by people calling for an end to affirmative action, the College Board, the company that created the SAT, is making a change to their exam in hopes of making things more equitable. [read more...]
America has had a long history of racial discrimination. Various unfair practices have been implemented into society, changing the course of success for hundreds of communities, and especially for people of color. [read more...]
Being black in Wisconsin can be hard. African-Americans come across many challenges in life compared to other groups of people, who may or may not encounter the same type of events in the state. [read more...]
Climate change is a continuing issue that impacts everybody. Scientists have looked at ways in which we can slow the process of climate change. One of these options includes energy powered by solar panels. [read more...]
PFAS, chemicals commonly found in non-stick cookware, water-resistant clothing, and firefighting foams among other things, have been found in 10 out of 19 Madison city wells tested. Though it is not a health threat at the levels detected, Madison Water Utility is making an effort to let people know what is in their water. [read more...]
Studies from the United Nations showed that 2015 was the hottest year ever recorded. The report came after a super El Niño elevated temperatures all around the world. However, this doesn’t solely apply to warmer weather. Recently, the winter of 2018-2019 had temperatures in the Midwest dropping as low as -55° Fahrenheit. These extreme weather conditions are effects of global warming and if not addressed, will have irreversible changes on the planet. [read more...]
When one thinks of segregation, the first thing that probably pops into the mind is the turbulent times of the 1950s. Buses, schools, theaters, and other spaces labeled “WHITES” and “COLOREDS,” are a common image of separation. But imagine spending your whole life with someone different, only to have memories of innocent, wild adolescence through a mono-toned lens, separate from your friends and partners. One daring journalist spent years in a small southern town documenting the evolution of the lives of teens. [read more...]
Hey, this is Amare and I’m gonna talk about Cuphead! Cuphead is an old school video game. It’s difficult, but you’ll get the hang of it as you go. [read more...]
Foxconn recently updated their plans to build a factory in Mount Pleasant to manufacture liquid crystal display panels. Their plan has created controversy among Wisconsinites who are already concerned about air quality and anticipate even more environmental degradation resulting from the factory. [read more...]
Madison’s Winnie Karanja is bringing a burst of color and diversity to the world of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) with Maydm, an organization teaching girls and children of color about the change they can affect in the world using technology. [read more...]
On Tuesday, April 16, the Madison Metropolitan School District announced that a principal from Beloit, Devon LaRosa, would be taking over as La Follette’s principal next year. This announcement followed the one made late last year by La Follette's current principal, Sam Storch, that he would be leaving La Follette in order to pursue a different job within the district administration. [read more...]
Again this year student reporters from Simpson Street Free Press will attend the nation’s largest High-Powered Rocket Competition for Native American college students. [read more...]
After 4 years on the track, Kiara Lee has been breaking both school records and personal records. [read more...]
Coming to Madison is a new state-of-the-art production facility for Fujifilm Cellular Dynamics, Inc. (FCDI). The company, formerly known as Cellular Dynamics International, was founded by James Thomson, a UW-Madison stem cell pioneer, in 2004. In 2015, Fujifilm Holdings Corp., a Japanese company, purchased and renamed Cellular Dynamics International for $307 million. [read more...]
On the night of August 14, 2018 history was made. Shelia Stubbs became the first black legislator in district 77. [read more...]
Author Min Jin Lee says, "You can hear the crackle of heat and the roar of a powerful fire burning..." through the pages of Kate Wisel's first short story collection, Driving in Cars with Homeless Men. Out of 530 applicants for the Drue Heinz Literature Prize, the Boston-born Monona writer won the honor along with $15,000 and publication by the University of Pittsburgh Press. The prize, one of the most prestigious in the country, was started by the former publisher of The Paris Review and co-founder of Ecco Press, Drue Heinz, in 1981. [read more...]
In elementary schools around the nation, words such as “barricade” are added to spelling lists; children are told to run in a zig-zag pattern to evade bullets; posters with lockdown instructions, sung to the tune of “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star,” are hung on the walls of kindergarten classrooms. [read more...]
For centuries in human history, one of the biggest problems in health has been the race to find a cure for major life-threatening diseases like cancer. Recently, the rise of genome sequencing research has alleviated some pains of illnesses and some even suggest the field has the potential to eradicate these epidemics altogether. [read more...]
Imagine it is the year 2514. A scientist had arrived at the University of Edinburgh, unboxed a container, and grew glass vials of bacteria left by a scientist of today’s world. [read more...]
Hey guys, this is Amare! Have you ever thought of playing New Super Mario Bros U. Deluxe on Nintendo Switch? If you answered yes, now you can! [read more...]
The Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism was chosen by Report for America (RFA) to host one of 50 journalists. Criminal justice issues in Wisconsin will be investigated by the Center's corps member. [read more...]
On March 4, the “world’s largest and most prestigious honor society for two-year college students”, the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society, announced that it will present Madison College President Jack Daniels with the preeminent award for community college presidents. [read more...]
After over three-and-a-half decades at its current location, the Shopko store at South Towne Mall in Monona will close in early May, joining the 173 other Shopko stores closing nationwide amid financial issues. This will leave 109 Shopko stores left in the United States, and none in Dane County. [read more...]
On November 25, 2018, a caravan of families who were marching to the United States to seek asylum became reckless. Their actions fueled the anti-immigrant views President Trump showed during the midterm elections. [read more...]
In physics, a culturally perceived “man’s science,” only two women had ever won the Nobel Prize, according to Rachel Ivie from the Statistical Research Center at the American Institute of Physics. This past year, in the fall of 2018, a third took home one of the most prestigious awards in science. [read more...]
New blood on the city of Madison’s Education Committee saved it from disbanding last night, Wednesday, February 13th at their regularly scheduled meeting. The Education Committee is one of two City of Madison Committees which addressed issues of education. [read more...]
Ten out of 22 school districts in Wisconsin have been commended for providing increased access and better performance in Advanced Placement programs. [read more...]
Yoanna Hoskins is an eighth grader at Sennett Middle School and a reporter at Simpson Street Free Press. She is also a karate champion. In September she took part in the WAKO World Championship For Cadets & Juniors in Jesolo, Italy, and came home with a bronze medal. [read more...]
In the lower Rio Grande River Valley, there is great biodiversity that will be negatively affected due to the construction of the border wall. [read more...]
The Dane County UW-Extension (UWEX) Master Gardener Volunteer program educates people in Dane County on how to grow and take care of plants and other natural resources. People who volunteer in the program use the information they learn to enable them to answer residents’ questions about gardening through face-to-face contacts, phone calls or emails. Experts within the Master Gardener Volunteer program who can answer more specific questions are also available.   [read more...]
The five American military branches – Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Marines, and Navy – often get all the credit for keeping us safe in our everyday lives. Meanwhile, the Air Force's civilian auxiliary, the Civil Air Patrol, works tirelessly day to day to ensure we are safe; but we rarely hear about them and the opportunities they provide to teens and adults alike. [read more...]
Transferring colleges is sometimes a challenge. It can be a daunting task with a lot of uncertainty, especially for students coming from under-resourced communities. A new grant and partnership between UW-Madison and Madison College (MATC) may help these students. Specifically, this new developing program aims to increase the graduation rate of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) transfer students coming from MATC to UW-Madison. [read more...]
When comparing public and private colleges, most people assume that the private college is much more expensive; Edgewood wants to change that assumption. A newly awarded tuition grant will allow Edgewood College to challenge UW System schools with a dramatically reduced tuition of $11,400 per year, starting in the 2019-2020 school year. [read more...]
In a recent article by Chris Hubbuch, a writer at the Wisconsin State Journal, as of last Monday, Tom Wiley was named Wisconsin State Journal’s 15th publisher in the paper’s 179-year history. [read more...]
The UW Extension FoodWIse nutrition and education program focuses on helping the community, specifically limited-income families, choose healthier food options. It is federally funded by the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program-Education (SNAP-Ed) and the Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP). [read more...]
The Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism recently announced it has joined the Trust Project. [read more...]
Electronic cigarettes (E-cigs) and other vaping devices came to the market in 2015. These products soon became popular, and the brand JUUL quickly rose to the top. JUUL, marketed as an alternative to regular cigarettes, was meant to help smokers switch to a better and "safer" way of smoking, vaping. [read more...]
Throughout recent years, cougar sightings in Wisconsin have occurred in over 17 different locations, suggesting that the feline is returning to Wisconsin’s landscape after more than a century gone. [read more...]
The Mellowhood Foundation’s Summer Initiative is a paid summer program in the southwest Madison Meadowood neighborhood that teaches a large age-range of children about independence and real-world responsibilities. The initiative draws on the knowledge students already have from school, while also teaching them skills such as independence and self-determination. Mellowhood student Amaria has learned valuable lessons through the program, such as “working hard, getting good grades, and failing from time to time.” [read more...]
On October 10, 2018, a public information meeting will be held by the Dane County Parks staff concerning the vegetation management of one of our many County Parks, Prairie Moraine County Park. The meeting will be open to the public and interested residents are encouraged to attend. [read more...]
As summer comes to an end and days of water fun are over, it’s easy to forget about our lakes. A leaf management study conducted by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) suggests that fall is a crucial time of the year to take action. [read more...]
A recent study confirms the speculations that the snows of Kilimanjaro located in Tanzania, Africa, may be gone by 2022. Lonnie Thompson, a glaciologist at Ohio State University in Columbus, says that the ice on Kilimanjaro is disappearing at a concerning rate. [read more...]
Just south of Madison, there is a problem with Rock County’s wells. Contaminated water is posing a serious threat to the health of those who live there. The culprit—nitrate. [read more...]
The Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council is suggesting several new requirements that the group says will strengthen Wisconsin’s open government rules, allow government bodies to operate with more transparency, and provide the public with better access to important information. [read more...]
Barks for Parks is an annual fundraiser for Dane County’s dog parks. Dane County is one of the first places in the United States to have designated off-leash areas for dogs and has been used as a model for other systems across the country. Barks for Parks raises money for upgrades, expansion, and special projects in Dane County’s dog parks. The event is a day-long celebration filled with music, food, and fun. [read more...]
YouTube has been around for 13 years and has risen to the top in entertainment popularity, especially with teenagers. But the platform has not always been known for appropriate content. Even though YouTube has strict content policies, anything can be uploaded and viewed by millions before it is taken down, even if it violates policy. YouTube flags content that is hateful, dangerous, shows nudity, and many other possible negative outcomes. In late 2017, the entertainment website displayed a prime example of how the system of uploading and screening content failed. [read more...]
Kwame Salter is an educator, mentor, and civil rights leader. He will be speaking this year at the 6th Annual Charles Hamilton Houston Institute Awards Luncheon. [read more...]
Journalist and former teacher Amber C. Walker is leaving her position at The Capital Times to earn her Masters of Fine Arts Degree in Digital Journalism at New York University this fall. [read more...]
Researchers have determined the symptoms in human brain cells caused by the most common risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease: the Apolipoprotein E (APOE) gene. They also found a way to fix and erase the gene’s harmful effects. [read more...]
As many Madisonians know, the Madison Children’s Museum hosts the American Girl Benefit Sale every year. This year’s sale will take place on July 21-22. All proceeds are awarded to nonprofits throughout Dane County through grants from American Girl’s Fund for Children, a long-time supporter of Simpson Street Free Press. [read more...]
In April, two adult gorillas died at the Milwaukee County Zoo in Southeastern Wisconsin. Investigators recently determined that their cause of death was an E. Coli contamination in drinking water. [read more...]
Fake news runs rampant on the internet. Generating most of this fake content, bots prey on users scrolling for the next story worth retweeting or otherwise sharing. Fake news reaches an audience 35 percent greater than truthful stories do, according to researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Luckily, many scientists and scholars are working to defeat internet bots and help users detect false stories. [read more...]
Set to begin summer of 2018, Madison Area Technical College will be adding a new feature to their campus. The largest rooftop solar system in Wisconsin will be implemented on top of the main Truax Campus building. Through a cooperation between Madison Gas and Electric, the program will bring alternative energy sources and new education opportunities to the Madison community. [read more...]
Imagine a shining utopian city with flying cars, robots, and towering glass buildings filled with elaborate technology. Who do you see inhabiting this city? One concept might change your view: Afrofuturism. [read more...]
Thanks to the new “Scholars of Promise” program, 150 students at Madison Area Technical College have access to new opportunities. Created by Madison College along with University of Wisconsin-Madison, qualifying students who complete their associate degree will be admitted to UW-Madison, free of cost, to continue pursuing their education. [read more...]
Many people think of time capsules, as small boxes buried in a backyard, filled with items that are possibly ancient. But what if we could put one on Mars for future astronauts to find? Emily Briere, an aerospace engineering student, thinks this could become a reality soon. [read more...]
A team of UW-Madison researchers tailing coyotes and foxes in the City of Madison has made a surprising discovery—the two rival canids have made amends. [read more...]
Open records watchdogs and clean government advocates call responses by Madison school officials to open records inquires “ugly.” A recent report distributed by the Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council and published in the Wisconsin State Journal says the Madison Metropolitan School District (MMSD) would not fulfill a request for information about public records without payment. Responding to a specific request, filed by the Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty (WILL), the Madison district required a payment of more than $1,000 to provide the requested information. [read more...]
The Milwaukee Health Department has faced scorn in the past about their cursory disregard of the city’s lead poisoning problem. It is estimated that 70,000 homes in Milwaukee currently have lead service lines. That number represents about 46% of all residences. [read more...]
Today, many recently established news companies use social media outlets like Facebook or Snapchat. Even though these companies may be under fire from more traditional publishers of news, such as the New York Times, the style of journalism being used is very similar to that of early American newspapers. [read more...]
The Capital Times, founded by William T. Evjue, turns 100 years old this year. Current editor emeritus, Dave Zweifel, is proud of the newspaper’s long and rich history. In fact, Mr. Zweifel refers to The Capital Times as Madison's proudly radical newspaper. [read more...]
In the 21st century, many businesses and industries are taking steps to encourage girls and women to pursue careers in traditionally male-dominated fields, including science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). However, women remain severely underrepresented in STEM careers. In fact, the U.S. Department of Commerce recently reported that while women hold about half of the jobs in the U.S., they fill only one-fourth of the nation’s STEM positions. [read more...]
El equipo de fútbol de Barcelona ha hecho público el 5 de julio el acuerdo con el argentino para su octava ampliación contractual en sus 13 cursos en la élite española. Su contrato se extiende tres años más, hasta 2021 y su ficha anual que se estima que son unos 26 millones de euros se mejora. Así pues, su cláusula de rescisión pasa de 250 a 300 millones de euros. [read more...]
For many years, Batman has had an equally-beloved sidekick named Robin who, as an adult, became “Nightwing”. The role of Robin was created in 1940 by DC Comics. Now, DC Comics wants to expand the bat-family films by giving Nightwing and Batgirl solo movies. [read more...]
Controversy and concern over lead pipes and safe drinking water is exploding in Milwaukee. New reports in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and elsewhere show city leaders knew about the situation at least three years ago and delayed taking action. Now citizens and a concerned public are calling lead contamination in the city a “public health crisis.” [read more...]
Plastic is a substance that has contaminated bodies of water, endangered wildlife across the globe, and fascinated humans since the 1950’s. In fact, in fewer than seven decades, humans have produced 8.3 billion metric tons of plastic. Half of this production since 2004. [read more...]
After 30 years of planning, the Lower Yahara River Trail will soon be open to the public. The highly anticipated trail will connect McDaniel Park in McFarland with Capital City Trail in Madison. It does more than just bridge two places; however, it will also tie two communities together. [read more...]
The Mallards Duck Pond at Warner Park came alive on Tuesday, August 22 to kick off the 2017 United Way campaign. About 900 volunteers from communities around Dane County gathered to launch a new “Season of Caring” initiative. [read more...]
Over the years, invasive species have made a home in the Mississippi River. But it seems that the Asian carp has yet again found its way into a Chicago waterway that is nine miles from Lake Michigan. It was caught below T.J. O’Brien Lock and Dam by a commercial fisherman working with the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. This is not the first time an Asian carp has snuck through the three electrical barriers, which are located in the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal. In 2010, a bighead carp was caught in Lake Calumet. [read more...]
After years of planning, a major redevelopment project is taking shape in Monona. The recently approved project is getting positive feedback from residents and will start construction later this year. The $36 million improvement plan, developed by Galway Companies, will take place. [read more...]
For many Wisconsinites, summer means enjoying the thousands of lakes sprinkled across the state. However, the spread of invasive species can heavily damage these waterways, and even endanger visitors. [read more...]
The current capabilities of technology are truly amazing. Creations ranging from driverless cars to artificial intelligence (AI) home assistants like “Alexa”, were mere visions 20 years ago. The smarter and more prevalent, technology is becoming, however, the more privacy becomes an issue. When it comes to these technologies in our homes, how much is too much? [read more...]
Earlier this summer, several large businesses and government facilities in North America and Europe were compromised in a worldwide cyberattack. [read more...]
By the year 2030, driverless cars that can think and act like human drivers may be on the roads, according to Kathy Winter, vice president of automated driving solutions for Intel. “Programmed with artificial intelligence, the [driverless] car could make quicker decisions, resulting in a lower percentage of car crashes,” said Winter. [read more...]
From car seats to cosmetics, you probably use foam products every day. But did you know that commercial foam is fabricated right here in Madison, Wisconsin? [read more...]
For the first time, the Dane County Parks Division has developed a survey as an added outreach effort to get citizen input on their Parks and Open Space Plan. Every five years, the Parks Division updates the plan, but this year they will administer a survey of Dane County residents in English and Spanish. The feedback from the survey will be considered to design the 2018-2023 plan. [read more...]
This coming December, a new branch of Summit Credit Union will open on Monona Drive. It will be the 34th Summit location. [read more...]
Recently, Simpson Street Free Press staff and students had the remarkable opportunity to meet and talk with Hip Hop Caucus CEO Reverend Lennox Yearwood at the Wisconsin League of Conservation Voters’ 15th anniversary celebration. [read more...]
UNA Mutual Group Foundation announced that it will donate $183,000 to Big Brothers Big Sisters Dane County at the latter’s recent graduation celebration for students. [read more...]
Recently, a team from Madison’s James C. Wright Middle School took home the championship in a national African American History Challenge Bowl competition in New Orleans. [read more...]
From wetlands to prairies, a diverse range of biomes contributes to the preservation of natural resources and wildlife in Wisconsin. Climate change, prairie loss, and deforestation have reduced some of the state’s richest sources of species diversity over the last couple of decades. [read more...]
The issue of lead in Wisconsin water is critical and widely recognized. However, the debate continues regarding who is financially responsible for repairing lead pipe lines. Recently, a bill was proposed in Wisconsin legislature that would require local water utilities to offer low and no-interest loans and grants to low-income families seeking to replace their service lines. [read more...]
Local nonprofit organizations Community Partners and Center for Families announced that they will merge last week. Hundreds of people came together to celebrate the merger at the 10th Annual Circle of Hope fundraising event. [read more...]
Hundreds of new college students will join Madison College’s new ‘Scholars of Promise’ scholarship program this fall. The program aims to help students from low-income backgrounds succeed as they pursue higher educations. [read more...]
At its recent 75th anniversary celebration, the Madison Community Foundation unveiled its plan to fund a new downtown green-space, the construction of which may take many decades to finish. [read more...]
Verona Area High School students camped out overnight last week to raise awareness about local poverty. [read more...]
Critiques of news organizations have been at the center of recent political and public rhetoric. Nevertheless, a recent poll yielded promising results for the news industry: over half of the population is willing to pay for news. [read more...]
Madison College (MATC) has expanded its relationship with Edgewood College. Under a new plan, the private institution Edgewood College will guarantee admission to MATC graduates with associate degrees in human services, or electrical or civil engineering. [read more...]
The Wisconsin League of Conservation Voters will celebrate its 15th anniversary on June 8. A non-profit, non-partisan organization “dedicated to electing conservation leaders, holding decision makers accountable, and encouraging lawmakers to champion conservation policies that effectively protect Wisconsin’s public health and natural resources,” the League will celebrate a decade and a half of advocating for the state’s water, land, and air. [read more...]
American Girl will host its annual benefit sale to help the Madison Children's Museum and its own Fund for Children this summer. This sale is a very popular event and typically brings in nearly 1 million dollars each year. [read more...]
How do people react when they see a headline with which they disagree? Do they read it, skip it, or gloss over it without batting an eyelash? [read more...]
Following a contentious 5-2 vote by the Madison School Board, James C. Wright Middle School will be the first school in the Madison Metropolitan School District to require students to wear uniforms. [read more...]
A tiny creature is making a big splash in Dane County. The New Zealand mud snail was detected for the second time in the area, and officials are becoming concerned about the invasive mollusk. First discovered three years ago in Black Earth Creek, the snail was recently sighted in Badger Mill Creek in Verona. [read more...]
Yesterday, one of the top local stories was the ‘pilot program’ to disconnect Madison students from social media applications during the school day. As high school students, we usually don’t get too hype about the news, but this was different. A full-scale ban on thirty social media apps. That meant no Snapchat, no Instagram, no Twitter, and seven long class periods. [read more...]
Sleep Inn hotel, tucked away at 4802 Tradewinds Parkway in south Madison, will soon receive an upgrade. Developers plan to nearly double the accommodations offered at this location with the construction of a MainStay Suites hotel. [read more...]
Wisconsin will face $7 billion in wastewater infrastructure and drinking water needs over the next 20 years, according to a recent report from the American Society of Civil Engineers. [read more...]
New York State recently eliminated a controversial teacher-screening test due to the disproportionate failure of black and Latino candidates. [read more...]
The University of Wisconsin-Madison's student-run newspaper, The Daily Cardinal celebrates its 125th birthday this year. Its first edition hit newsstands on April 4th, 1892. Today, The Cardinal continues to publish local and national news online and in print. [read more...]
Before Bob Dylan was the music legend he ultimately became, he wrote a love song to the dairy state, Wisconsin. The lyric sheet for this unreleased piece will today cost $30,000 minimum. [read more...]
Hundreds of individuals were arrested in Moscow during an opposition rally Sunday. Alec Luhn, a journalist working in Russia for The Guardian, was among the arrested. [read more...]
The DNR states that the mission of Wisconsin state parks is “to protect and enhance our natural ensure the right of all people to use and enjoy these resources in their work and leisure… and in this partnership consider the future and generations to follow.” Unfortunately, these goals may become less attainable with Governor Walker’s recent proposal to eliminate tax support for the state park system. [read more...]
In an effort to reach underserved young people and diversify their pool of applicants, Edgewood College recently created a program that would encourage diversity among its college students. To learn more about this program—the “Edgewood College Math Precollege Program”—Simpson Street Free Press reporters interviewed Steven Post, professor of Mathematics at Edgewood. [read more...]
Alyssa Anderson, a 7th grade student at James C. Wright Middle School, was recently chosen from thousands of applicants as the Wisconsin winner of the ‘Doodle 4 Google’ contest. [read more...]
Last Saturday, a team of Simpson Street Free Press reporters attended the Kingdom Justice Summit put together by Door Creek Church and at the downtown Upper House. While most people might not willingly go to church early on a Saturday, we found ourselves awake, and even dancing -- under the influence of coffee and music. The worship team included members from ten different local churches -- a fact that exemplifies the spirit and unity of the event. Representatives of several different churches throughout the Midwest were among the conference’s attendees. [read more...]
Dane County Executive Joe Parisi announced recently that $2 million is available in the Urban Water Quality Grant Program for 2017. This is welcome news to county residents seeking to halt the flow of local water pollutants. [read more...]
What would happen if scientists had the ability to eliminate diseases transmitted to humans, like malaria? [read more...]
According to Danielle Douglas of The Washington Post, parents are relying more and more on their annual income to pay for their children's college educations. [read more...]
A scholarship program through the Janesville District is attempting to diversify teachers and staff to reflect the demographics of their students. Started in 2008, the Multicultural Teacher Opportunities Scholarship gives Janesville minority students the opportunity to attend college and subsequently procure a teaching position in the school district. [read more...]
Solar power has taken Wisconsin by storm. In 2015, the state’s installed solar capacity grew by 94 percent and powered more than 3,800 homes. As demand for solar panels has risen, so have associated costs. Recent changes to large-scale energy company’s billing provisions, like We Energies, have made solar power much more expensive. [read more...]
Cries of victory echoed from Standing Rock North Dakota as protestors celebrated news of a planned rerouting of the Dakota Access Pipeline. The Army Corps of Engineering announced recently that it would not allow the pipeline to follow the current planned route and will look for alternatives. [read more...]
The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation announced recently that it will match any donation to the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism, up to $1,000, through January 19, 2017. [read more...]
In a year that claimed many lives, famous and otherwise, the world has lost a great scientific mind. While she has never been a household name, Vera Rubin was a groundbreaking scientist. [read more...]
On December 8, 2016, America bade farewell to an American legend. John Glenn, senator, lifelong pilot, decorated war veteran, and one of NASA’s first astronauts passed away in his home state of Ohio. [read more...]
Since the water crisis in Flint, Michigan, the issue of lead-contaminated water and lead pipes has gained renewed attention. Since then, many states, including Wisconsin, have taken action to replace the lead water pipes still in use by schools, homes, businesses and other facilities. [read more...]
Did you know that in 2007, the nationally recognized AVID program or the Advancement Via Individual Determination program, started at East High School in Madison, Wisconsin. [read more...]
Dane County Executive Joe Parisi announced recently that local benefactor Stephen Morton donated 114 acres of forestland to Dane County Parks. Located in the Black Earth/Mazomanie area, the newly-unveiled Morton Forest illuminates many scenic views including the Blue Mound, which is the biggest hill in southern Wisconsin. [read more...]
Imagine growing up struggling with your sexual or gender identity. Coming to terms with who you are can be difficult—especially when you find yourself battling the opinions and beliefs of the people around you. Eventually, you might figure it out. However, whether you identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, pansexual, asexual, transgender—you crave acceptance from your family, friends, and society. After all this questioning, you may decide you're ready to come out. You tell your family about your identity. However, they don't accept you and kick you out, leaving you homeless. [read more...]
Beloved political reporter and groundbreaking journalist Gwen Ifill passed away early last week at the age of 61 following a private battle with uterine cancer. Ms. Ifill was well-known and respected for her coverage of the White House and national campaigns and for her work with The Washington Post, The New York Times, NBC, and PBS. [read more...]
According to a 2003 study, more than 70,000 Dane County residents grapple with low literacy. Founded in 1974, Madison’s Literacy Network directly combats low literacy and provides free services for those hoping to improve their English language skills. [read more...]
Imagine a wall. On it is painted a destructive sea with a mountainous tree in the middle. Grimy pollution litters the tree’s roots. Also featured are small white human and animal silhouettes. Elegant flowers gild treetops. Behind these designs are two worlds—human and natural—that depict antagonistic relationships. This wall, these images are more than just fantasy; in fact, this is a real mural that Japanese artist Ikeda Manabu has worked on for the past three years at the Chazen Museum of Art. [read more...]
One in three Latino, African American, and single parent households in the Dane County struggle to get enough nutritional food, according to a report by Public Health Madison and Dane County (PHMDC). For in contrast, white households in Dane County, about 20 percent face food insecurities. These numbers represent hunger problems for our families here in Madison. [read more...]
For years, African American history and culture has been downplayed in literature, films, and the media. However, with the opening of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture, the African-American narrative will finally become accessible to everyone, creating a richer story of America. [read more...]
Marianne Morton, Executive Director at Common Wealth Development, announced her retirement after 35 years working for the company. Morton began working at Common Wealth as a VISTA volunteer with the AmeriCorps program and was hired as permanent staff in 1983. From there, she rose through the ranks. [read more...]
Two well-known and talented college basketball players have withdrawn from the NBA draft and will return to school. Nigel Hayes of Wisconsin and Malik Pope of San Diego State will return to their college teams. Both players will add firepower to two of the best basketball programs in the NCAA. [read more...]
If you’re ever looking for a sophisticated bite, look no further than Broadway. The teen editor crew and Assistant Editor, Aarushi Agni, from Simpson Street Free Press made the short walk from our West Broadway office to grab some grub at the newly renovated restaurant and bar, Off Broadway. Off Broadway is the reincarnation of South Bay Lounge, owned by Joe Klinzing at 5404 Raywood Road, Madison, Wisconsin. [read more...]
Madison, Wisconsin’s very own One City Early Learning Center on the South Side of Madison will be the first US pilot site for the groundbreaking AnjiPlay curriculum. This preschool focused curriculum was developed over a 15 year period by Ms. Cheng Xuequin, Director of Preprimary Education for Anji County, China. It features minimally-structured, open-ended environments designed to allow more imaginative play and contact with the natural world. It places trust in children to take risks and to seek their own individual understanding of the world around them. [read more...]
After 39 years in business, the south side's beloved Badger Bowl is closing. Town Chairman Jim Campbell said the owners of the bowling alley and music venue decided to sell the property to a luxury car dealership, the Illinois-based Field Enterprises. [read more...]
A surprising use of a 3D printer recently saved the life of one lucky duck named Phillip. Because his feet had been frozen in harsh outdoor conditions, Phillip couldn’t run, swim, or fit in with the other ducks. When Vicki Rabe-Harrison, a caring citizen, saw Phillip with his legs shriveled up, she decided to take him under her wing. After watching a video online about a 3D printer that belonged to a middle school teacher named Mr. Jischke, Rabe-Harrison knew what to do. She immediately emailed Jischke to see if she could use the 3D printer to construct a new pair of feet for Phillip. [read more...]
For years, Mayor Paul Soglin and the Madison Police have criticized the Penn Park shelter, located at the South Madison Park, 2101 Fisher St., citing inadequate design and questionable structure. There have been several proposals demanding for the demolition of the 1960s-era shelter. Some proposals called for replacement of the existing shelter with a new building complete with restrooms, concessions space, a meeting room and up to 3,000 square feet of covered area. [read more...]
Water pollution is unarguably one of Wisconsin’s biggest environmental problems. The state prides itself on clean lakes and rivers, yet many Wisconsinites are appalled at the findings in a recent report by the Department of Natural Resources (DNR). In a report, the DNR disclosed Wisconsin’s inability to enforce laws protecting drinking water due to a number of pollutants contaminating lakes and rivers. The pollutants are generated by concentrated animal feeding operations, also known as CAFOs. [read more...]
Recently, during a Simpson Street Free Press teen editor meeting, we were visited by a wonderful, high-achieving woman. We were lucky, and we quickly proceeded to pick her brain. Joan Collins has made a career of being a journalist, media consultant, and publicist. She started young. At age 11, she began her very own newspaper called The Neighborhood Chatterbox. [read more...]
Did you know that a good apology has six different components? A new study completed by Ohio State University Fisher College of Business, revealed the ingredients of an effective apology. The study shows that those who incorporate more of these components into their apologies have a better chance of being forgiven. [read more...]
For many lower income students, going to college might seem like an unreachable dream. Thankfully, a $50,000 donation from UW Health and Unity Health Insurance to Madison College will provide scholarships to under-represented youth to help them get on the right path toward a health care career. [read more...]
American Girl, the Middleton-based toy company and long-time friend of Simpson Street Free Press, recently signed a multi-year agreement with Scholastic, publisher and distributor of children’s books. [read more...]
Two Midwestern energy companies plan to shift towards renewable resources. The Lacrosse-based Dairyland Power Cooperative plans to build the first Wisconsin wind farm since 2011. The farm will be located 20 miles southeast of Platteville and construction is projected to begin in 2017. While operating, the turbines would generate enough electricity to power more than 25,000 Midwestern homes. [read more...]
Would you believe that the worst gifts are the gifts that took the most thought? According to an article in The Washington Post, they are. So, next time you are buying a gift, think of this. Research done by Mary Steffel, an assistant professor from the University of Cincinnati, shows that the more thought you put in to a present, the less probable it is that the recipient will like it. Besides, most gift purchases are motivated by the personality of the recipient rather than their desire for a particular gift. [read more...]
Completing college is a milestone that improves quality of life and future earning potential. But for many graduating high school seniors, high tuition fees are a barrier to attending college. To help bridge the gap for lower-income students, Madison College (MATC) has launched the Scholars of Promise program. [read more...]
The ‘Maker Faire’ movement is sweeping the nation. And earlier this month, it took Madison by storm. [read more...]
Recent data published by the Nation’s Report Card shows that our nation’s 12th-graders are declining in reading and math skills. In fact, the study indicates that only one-third of high school seniors are ready for the academic rigor of college. [read more...]
Three men stranded on a deserted island were rescued when an overhead U.S. Navy plane saw the word "help" written on the shore of the small island last April. [read more...]
In Flint, Michigan, people have unwittingly ingested lead-infused water due to a change of water sources. But how do they find out where people are getting poisoned and who has lead in their blood? [read more...]
In the 21st century, college students from low-income backgrounds often have trouble affording school and paying off student loans. Imagine adding unexpected bills to the mix. The Great Lakes Higher Education Corporation & Affiliates recently created the Emergency Grant Assistance Program to help these students pay for “unforeseen financial emergencies.” [read more...]
The Wisconsin State Assembly recently voted to lift a restriction on nuclear power production in the state. Assembly Bill 384 now goes to the Senate. Democrats and Republicans alike support the bill. [read more...]
Lowell Elementary School just celebrated its 100th birthday. The building, located at 401 Maple Avenue on Madison’s east side, opened its doors on January 3, 1916. More than 400 students currently attend Lowell Elementary. [read more...]
Simpson Street Free Press staff writer and columnist, Enjoyiana Nururdin, was recently promoted to lead editor of La Follette High School’s student newspaper, The Lance. [read more...]
2015. The year of Black Lives Matter, Caitlyn Jenner, same-sex marriage, and Rachel Dolezal. It seemed that with each passing month, 2015 continued to push, question, and challenge social norms and issues. [read more...]
Madison Community Foundation (MCF) is a local charitable organization that creates grants for meaningful local initiatives. Madison College president Dr. Jack Daniels recently joined 16 other community leaders on the MCF Board of Governors. [read more...]
When I first walked into Simpson Street Free Press about six months ago, I couldn't believe it. There were young people of all ages, colors, and backgrounds working in a newsroom. And working really hard. This group of kids produces five publications, including the bilingual newspaper La Prensa. SSFP students also organize book clubs, do geography quizzes, and hold vocab contests. At first I was a little intimidated, but now I actually think it’s fun. My point is this: none of this would be possible without United Way of Dane County. [read more...]
FIFA is known as the most important name in the world of soccer. FIFA stands for Fédération International de Football Association. The FIFA world cup is one of the biggest sports events in the world. It is held every four years in a host country. The world cup is a big tournament where countries come together and compete. [read more...]
As a way to protect patients from infections that spread in hospitals, some hospitals in New York and New Mexico are starting to offer hospitalization at home. The arrangement includes daily visits from doctors and nurses as well as at-home lab draws, medication, x-rays, and even ultrasound scans if needed. The cost of this at-home care is typically no greater than if the patient received care at a hospital instead. [read more...]
Solving crimes is often difficult. When detectives and police officers have wide ranges of DNA samples to work with, however, the task can be easier. Yet, not all DNA recovered from crime scenes matches samples in the federal DNA database. [read more...]
The thought of surgery is gruesome, but just imagine being awake while tangerine-sized flaps of your skull are cut open. [read more...]
Have you ever wondered what the inside of a technology company looks like and what goes on there? Recently, Simpson Street Free Press student reporters had the opportunity to visit Hardin Design and Development (HDD), a Madison software and application firm founded in 2008. Vice President and Co-founder of HDD Scott Resnick and HDD employee Anouson Bounket led us on a tour of the start-up company. We also had the chance to sit down with them and ask questions about what it’s like to work in the tech industry. [read more...]
Simpson Street Free Press student reporters recently had the opportunity to meet and interview potters from the rural Mexican village of Mata Ortiz at the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art (MMoCA). Each artist has a unique story—some began the trade at age 17, while others started at only four years old. All of the artists, young and old, share a deep passion for the ceramic arts and their village. [read more...]
Most dolphins are gentle aquatic playmates, but it’s a different story when it comes to dolphins trained by Russia. Training these dolphins takes place in Sevastopol, Crimea, at one of only two combat-dolphin training centers in the world. [read more...]
Wisconsin is ready to handle U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's upcoming pollution standards according to two environmental groups. In fact, Wisconsin has been doing so well that the state’s proposed carbon dioxide levels for 2030 are 30 percent below what they were in 2005. [read more...]
Movie theaters around the country are now using a new method to lure people to their screens: reclining seats. [read more...]
The Barrymore Theatre played host to special guests this past Mother’s Day: Ann Imig and the cast of “Listen to Your Mother.” [read more...]
Since April of this year, Jack Daniels, president of Madison Area Technical College, has been pushing to sell the university's downtown location and invest instead in the school's south Madison campus. Following weeks of debate, MATC's board of trustees voted on this controversial proposal during their May 13 meeting. [read more...]
The Henry Vilas Zoo recently welcomed a new arrival --baby orangutan Keju. She is being introduced to the public now across multiple media forms. [read more...]
Lafollette High School’s assistant principle, Jim Pliner, recently announced he will be leaving the school at the end of the 2014-2015 academic year. Pliner will take the position of head principle at Oregon High School (OHS) for the 2015-2016 academic year. [read more...]
Language is remarkable. Today, there are over six thousand known languages spoken throughout the world. In the remote territories of northern Australia, natives of the small village of Lajamanu have even invented their own language. [read more...]
After decades without solutions, researchers may have developed a cure for type 1 diabetes. Recently, studies successfully converted stem cells into insulin-producing cells, and in sufficient quantities for transplantation, thus offering glimmers of hope to those battling this disease. [read more...]
Imagine you are in a world surrounded by zombies, skeletons, and creepers, a world where you can build whatever you want, fight monsters, and be creative and, most importantly, survive. [read more...]
Evansville High School student and Simpson Street Free Press teen editor Sylvan Bachhuber received a $25,000 scholarship to attend Conserve School in Land O’Lakes, Wisconsin. This makes her the second Free Press student accepted by the Conserve School this year. [read more...]
Aiming to reduce pollution, the state of California recently enacted the first law in the country that bans the use of single-use plastic bags in grocery stores. [read more...]
United Way President & CEO Leslie Ann Howard announced today that United Way of Dane County anticipates its 2014 campaign will raise $19.6 million. This figure, which will be used to implement the community’s Agenda for Change, surpasses last year’s campaign by $1.6 million and this year’s goal by $600,000. [read more...]
Six-time WNBA All-Star, Becky Hammon was hired as an assistant coach for the San Antonio Spurs earlier this fall. This makes her the first female paid full-time coach for an NBA team. [read more...]
One year following former National Security Agency systems analyst Edward Snowden’s release of controversial information regarding the U.S. and other countries’ wiretapping of citizens, a new report affirms privacy invasion is a growing issue on an international scale. [read more...]
The tale of Amelia Earhart’s mysterious disappearance on July 2, 1937 during her attempt to circumnavigate the globe is a familiar one. For years, many believed that Earhart and her navigator Fred Noonan crashed into the Pacific Ocean after running out of fuel near Howland Island, their intended destination. However, a recently identified piece of aluminum, named Artifact 2-2-V-1, disproves this theory and offers insight into what really happened. [read more...]
At just seven-years-old and only in the second grade Samuel Garduño- Martinez, otherwise known as Samy, is the youngest staff writer in the history of Simpson Street Free Press. [read more...]
It’s no wonder The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks—Rebecca Skloot's non-fiction account of theft, disease, exploitation, and science—became a bestseller. This shocking text tells the story of Henrietta Lacks, a woman incapable of telling it herself. [read more...]
The Rosetta probe is a spacecraft that was launched into space March 2, 2004 by the European Space Agency. The unmanned probe was sent to pursue comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. [read more...]
California and Nevada are facing droughts more severe and long-lasting than lasting any in the past 40 years. The recent lack of rain has led to wildfires, damaged animal habitats, new rules and fines. [read more...]
Earlier this year, tension rose in Ukraine as protestors called for a new government. President Viktor Yankovych, elected to office in 2010, was ultimately removed from power. [read more...]
During a recent tour of the newly expanded Aldo Leopold Nature Center, executive director Camille Zanoni shared some alarming data with Free Press student writers. Zanoni said that children spend only one percent of their time outside. This directly correlates with a rise in childhood obesity, depression, ADD/ADHD, and cardiovascular problems. [read more...]
Recent studies led by Dr. Jim Olson indicate that scorpion venom may help identify cancerous tissue. If developed further, this research could raise the quality of life for cancer patients. [read more...]
Elephant tusks are composed of ivory, a white, bone-like material. Currently, up to 35,000 of the estimated 500,000 living African elephants are slaughtered every year for their ivory tusks. Tusks from a single male elephant weigh more than 250 pounds. On the black market, one pound of ivory is valued as high as $1,500. [read more...]
McFarland High School student and Simpson Street Free Press staff writer Rebekah Severson received a $15,000 scholarship to attend Conserve School in Land O' Lakes, Wisconsin. Severson, 16, will spend the winter of 2015 at the school studying environmental and conservation practices. [read more...]
Recently, seven Simpson Street Free Press reporters had the opportunity to attend Madison Community Foundation’s 2014 annual event. It was enlightening, educational, and fun. The highlight of the night was the keynote address, given by renowned journalist and reporter, Dan Rather. [read more...]
Next week, millions of Americans will celebrate our nation’s Independence on the Fourth of July. Local Dane County businesses will also mark the holiday. These locally owned businesses explore what it means to be independent. [read more...]
Hoping to garner support for the national “buy local” movement, Dane Buy Local and the American Independent Business Alliance (AMIBA) have declared June 27 through July 7, 2014 “Independents Week.” This week-long national campaign will reflect on economic democracy, local entrepreneurship, diversity, and community. [read more...]
Simpson Street Free Press assistant editor Stephanie Sykes was recently recognized by the University of Wisconsin-Madison for her leadership. [read more...]
Our very own Assistant Editor, Aarushi Agni was recently recognized for her reporting for the The Daily Cardinal, a student-run daily newspaper at UW-Madison. Every year the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) holds its Mark of Excellence Competition to honor the best student journalists. Aarushi is ranked among the top three in the region for “General News Reporting.” [read more...]
Most Madison streets are bland and colorless, but that may no longer be the case if a proposal by Alderperson Marsha Rummel of the Near East Side is passed. Her proposal outlines a process to gain the City’s approval to do street art. [read more...]
“If you want this Madison cultural landmark to stick around, start breaking open those piggy banks!” says the Four Star Video Heaven campaign website. [read more...]
A new invasive species has been discovered in Wisconsin’s lake system. Until 2012, New Zealand mud snails had only been found in the western United States. A lab at the University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point analyzed a sample of water detected at Black Earth Creek and detected the presence of snails in Wisconsin waters. There were only a few asexual clones of the snails, which helped the scientists determine that the snails were from Colorado. It is possible that they came by way of a sport fisherman. [read more...]
With this winter’s record-breaking fronts, the depth of ice covering Madison’s lakes may have been the least of your worries - unless you spend your time fishing on it. With the worst of the winter season behind us, however, you may begin to wonder: when is all the ice going to melt? [read more...]
As a full-blooded African, everything in my genes leads me to cringe at the thought of anything related to cold. Recently, however, something fascinating happened in my adopted home state of Wisconsin. This year’s harsh winter allowed for spectacular ice caves to emerge along the shores of Lake Superior. Even someone of my heritage can appreciate the allure of these natural wonders. [read more...]
Mass transportation is an important part of any big city. In most cases, citizens depend on local transit to get to work. In New York City, people are now using the subway system not only for work, but also to maintain their social lives. Consequently, two long-time records have been broke in “the City.” [read more...]
Pancakes taste wonderful, but they would not be as scrumptious without real maple syrup. And this year in Wisconsin, we have a lot of it. [read more...]
A painting long considered fake was recently declared a Van Gogh original by a set of experts at the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam. [read more...]
Have you ever wondered how prehistoric creatures moved or how their body structures were formed? [read more...]
Henry Vilas Zoo’s very own 18-year-old African lion, Henry, died this year. His health and quality of life was decreased over time due to old age and late stage renal failure. [read more...]
Amid national discussion over interest rates on federal student loans, and the mounting problem of student loan debt, University of Wisconsin System passed a tuition freeze to take place this academic year. This means that for the 2013-14 year, costs of tuition will remain the same as the previous school year. The freeze will apply to in-state and out-of-state undergraduates along with graduate students. Therefore, the change will affect all UW System students. Lawmakers wrote the tuition freeze into the 2013-15 state budget that was passed by Governor Scott Walker. [read more...]
Shoppers want to be well aware of which products are good and which ones are bad. It’s easy to tell when you visit a store and examine it for yourself, but it gets much trickier online. Experts say some online reviews are not actually consumer opinions, but are for-hire endorsements or promotional material. [read more...]
Across the Middle East and Africa one of the great civil rights struggles of our generation is being fought. Young girls are on the front lines. [read more...]
Two researchers at Cornell University arranged an experiment to finally settle the score about the age-old diet advice: “Never shop on an empty stomach.” [read more...]
On June 21, the summer solstice, all types of live music will be heard in Madison, thanks to the volunteer-led organization called Make Music Madison. [read more...]
The Capital Times recently won 10 awards from the Milwaukee Press Club annual for “Excellence in Wisconsin Journalism.” [read more...]
Dane County recently reached an agreement with the Bruce Company to pur-chase hundreds of acres of land along the Sugar River. This historic purchase is the county’s largest-ever acquisition of river frontage and creates countless new opportuni-ties for outdoor recreation. [read more...]
A new initiative aimed at the achievement gap opened recently in Madison’s Leopold School neighborhood. It is a partnership between Dane County and the United Way of Dane County. The program intends to support learning for children from birth until they enter four-year-old kindergarten. “This investment will help make sure more kids enter four-year old kindergarten ready to succeed,” says Dane County Executive Joe Parisi. [read more...]
Recently, a new American Girl doll named Saige Copeland was introduced as the 2013 Girl of the Year. Saige is a fourth grader from Albuquerque, New Mexico, who loves to paint and ride horses. She is the latest edition of the popular featured doll by the Middleton-based American Girl Company. [read more...]
Last year, a 14-year old Pakistani girl was shot by members of the Taliban, a militant Islamic group, because she wrote a blog advocating education for girls. [read more...]
Blackbeard was the most fearsome pirate that ever to sail the seas, notorious for his daredevil tactics in battle. Blackbeard was known for his success in piracy and for his murderous ways. [read more...]
According to new rules set by Wisconsin’s Department of Natural Resources (DNR), hunters will be allowed to eliminate almost a quarter of Wisconsin’s wolves this winter. Debates go on about whether this hunt will actually make any difference in our state’s thriving wolf population. [read more...]
South Towne Mall is getting makeover. Construction and reconfiguration at the mall began in August. South Towne is anchored by Kohl’s and Shopko department stores, and by Hobby Lobby. [read more...]
In an effort to get two red pandas to mate, the Henry Vilas Zoo is hosting a new male red panda. [read more...]
The city of Green Bay has a downtown rodent infestation and city officials intend to deal with it in a unique way; they plan to introduce birds of prey. [read more...]
The Aronson Award for career achievement in social justice journalism is an honor given to Nobel Peace Prize winners and other prestigious journalists. The 2011 Aronson Award went to John Nichols from Madison’s very own Capital Times. [read more...]
Many people are familiar with the Big Bang Theory: a large explosion created the entire universe. However, most people are unfamiliar with how matter was formed. Scientists have theorized that the key to this puzzle is the Higgs particle. [read more...]
Pandas, especially giant pandas, are extremely difficult to breed in captivity. Because they are endangered in the wild, zoos try hard to breed pandas as a way to help protect the species. [read more...]
Recently, Henry Vilas Zoo’s white rhinoceros, Gracie, died at the age of 41. Gracie was brought to the zoo in 1976 with her mate George. Both have lived well beyond the normal 20 to 30 year life expectancy for rhinos. [read more...]
These days it seems everything is available through technology, even reading material. In recent years, Amazon and Barnes & Noble have developed e-readers, and made available thousands of books for purchase and download online. [read more...]
While many newspapers in Wisconsin are seeing a drop in their hard copy circulation count, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s readership has actually grown according to The Audit Bureau of Circulation. [read more...]
The results of a national reading exam administered in 2009 showed Wisconsin’s African-American fourth-grade students posted scores that trailed their racial peers in every other state. Now, there is new national data from 2011; and this new data shows only slight improvement for those Wisconsin students. [read more...]
Monday, Mary Burke, Trek Bicycle executive and former Commerce secretary, announced plans to run for Lucy Mathiak’s current seat on the School Board this spring. She is running on the platform of closing the achievement gap in Madison public schools. [read more...]
Technology, especially in television, has improved significantly over time. From black and white to color, from poor sound quality to movie theater surround sound, and now from 2-D to 3-D, the way we watch television is constantly being reinvented. [read more...]
OMG! New expressions are being added to the dictionary! [read more...]
The Dane County drug court began in 1996 and is one of about 2,000 such courts in the United States. Participants must have no convictions or pending cases due to violence or weapon possession. They must also have an identifiable need for drug treatment. [read more...]