Midday Podcast | WYPR

Midday Podcast

Democratic Debate Debrief

Oct 14, 2015

  We're analyzing the first debate among Democratic presidential hopefuls – former Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, former Virginia Governor Jim Webb, and. Our guests: Political commentator Barry Rascovar of the blog PoliticalMaryland.com and Matthew Crenson, professor emeritus of political science at Johns Hopkins University. Join us for the conversation by sending an email to Midday@wypr.org or calling 410-662-8780.


Today, a look at a troubling situation affecting students nationwide - chronic absenteeism. "Chronic absenteeism" is defined as missing 10% or more of school days in a school year for any reason. New research out of Johns Hopkins estimates that 5 million to 7.5 million students nationwide are chronically absent each year, including 10 percent of kindergartners and first graders. In Baltimore City, more than 40 percent of high school students are chronically absent. Robert Balfranz, research professor at the Center for the Social Organization of Schools at the Johns Hopkins School of Education, joins us to talk about a new White House initiative on the issue.

Baltimore’s homicide count for 2015 is up to 261- eleven just this week. We’ll speak to  community activist Ericka Alston about how West Baltimore neighborhoods are responding to the gun violence, and ask Darrel Stephens, the Executive Director of the Major Cities Chiefs Association about nationwide homicide trends. Then, a look at changes to the Charm City Circulator’s route with Kirby Fowler of the Downtown Partnership of Baltimore. We also talk S.A.T. scores and economic disparity with Timothy Sandoval of the Baltimore Business Journal. We’ll discuss the results of the recent Goucher Poll of Maryland residents with Mileah Kromer.  Plus a preview of a short film playing this weekend at the Baltimore International Black Film Festival.

New Supreme Court Term - Key Cases to Watch

Oct 8, 2015

  The Supreme Court opened its 2015 term this week. We speak with two local law professors about the cases the court is likely to hear -- cases involving hotly debated issues such as affirmative action in college admissions, unions, the death penalty and abortion. Our guests: Mark Graber of the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law and Garrett Epps of the University of Baltimore School of Law.


  The White House announced last month that 10,000 Syrian refugees will be admitted to the United States over the coming year. Since 2011, when civil war erupted in Syrian, fewer than 2000 displaced Syrians were welcomed into America.

Midday host Sheilah Kast talks with Sheila Bair, the new president of Washington College, a private liberal arts school on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. We’ll cover her background in the field of finance, and get her thoughts on the student loan crisis. Plus, how do you make the transition easier for students from inner-city school? According to President Bair, it’s time for colleges to consider group admission.