Founded in 2013, the AltSchool model is an odd blend of retro and futuristic — "Montessori 2.0," as its founder, Max Ventilla, says. Each of the four schools is a single, small, mixed-age class of 25 to 30 kids, with two teachers. That's what the company calls a "microschool." Courtesy of AltSchool hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of AltSchool

NPR Ed

A For-Profit School Startup Where Kids Are Beta Testers

AltSchool's innovative for-profit schools are based on intensive technical innovation. The startup has attracted more than $100 million from high-profile backers, including Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg.

A boy plays in the Sandtown neighborhood, where Freddie Gray was arrested, on April 30. "Every day, this is the atmosphere," Addison says. "It's not an atmosphere of aggression. It's not an atmosphere of violence!" Andrew Burton/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Andrew Burton/Getty Images

Race

'Baltimore For Real': A Tour Through The Sandtown Neighborhood

Twenty-five-year-old Travon Addison, who lives near the place where Freddie Gray was arrested, wishes people could understand what living in Baltimore is like, wishes they could see his Baltimore. So we let him show us.

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What's inside artisanal looking bottles may be startlingly close — and in cases exactly the same — to bourbon produced in big batches. Mike McCune/Flickr hide caption

itoggle caption Mike McCune/Flickr

The Salt

'Bourbon Empire' Reveals The Smoke And Mirrors Of American Whiskey

A new book suggests that tall tales on craft bourbon labels are the rule rather than the exception. They're just one example of a slew of "carefully cultivated myths" created by the bourbon industry.

Joel Xu, 25, drives in Shanghai for People's Uber, a ride-sharing service. He makes about $4,000 a month – a good wage in Shanghai – and loves meeting new people he'd otherwise never encounter. Frank Langfitt/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Frank Langfitt/NPR

Parallels - World News

People's Republic Of Uber: Driving For Connections In China

Uber is becoming more popular in China, but many drivers say they don't do it for the money. They say they like the human connection and the freedom.

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Vijay Iyer Trio: Tiny Desk Concert

Tiny Desk Concerts

Watch Vijay Iyer Trio's Daring Games Of Rhythmic Interaction

Iyer's working band transforms selections from throughout the pianist's deep and varied catalog.

Ruth Rendell won countless awards for her work, including the Mystery Writers of America's Grand Master Award and the Crime Writers' Association Diamond Dagger for lifetime achievement. Jerry Bauer hide caption

itoggle caption Jerry Bauer

Book News & Features

Ruth Rendell, Pioneer Of The Psychological Thriller, Dies

The British mystery writer was known for her Inspector Wexford series and in her later years became active in Labour Party politics. She was 85.

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Where you grow up matters. Quoctrung Bui/NPR hide caption

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Planet Money

Where Poor Kids Grow Up Makes A Huge Difference

Poor kids who moved to neighborhoods with less poverty did much better than those who didn't move, two new studies found.

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Jean-Baptiste Thoret, Charlie Hebdo's film critic, speaks at a news conference in Washington on May 1. Thoret will receive, on behalf of Charlie Hebdo, the PEN American Center's Freedom of Expression Courage Award in New York on Tuesday. Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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The Two-Way - News Blog

'Charlie Hebdo' Staffer Pushes Back Against Writers' Opposition To Award

"If you're standing for the freedom of expression, you can't be at one moment for this freedom of expression, and two or three minutes later, against that," film critic Jean-Baptiste Thoret says.

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Of I Wish You The Sunshine Of Tomorrow, Rodgers says: "The ICU room my dad was in on the day he died had yellow walls. Every time we visited him we had to wear hospital gowns that were a bright yellow. [It] was a recurring color in that whole time frame of my life." Courtesy of Jennifer Rodgers hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of Jennifer Rodgers

Shots - Health News

A Woman Uses Art To Come To Terms With Her Father's Death

Artist Jennifer Rodgers' father was hospitalized for seven months with sepsis before he died. She used the creative process to try to comprehend his suffering and her loss.

In this photo posted on Twitter on Sunday, and provided by NASA, Italian astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti sips espresso from a cup designed for use in zero-gravity, on the International Space Station. AP hide caption

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The Two-Way - News Blog

Space Shot: Italian Astronaut 'Boldly' Brews Espresso On Space Station

Italian Sam Cristoforetti tweeted Sunday an image of her sipping espresso from a zero-gravity cup. No word yet on whether the coffee was any good.

In Budapest, Hungary, a man takes a photo with people dressed as their favorite Star Wars stormtroopers. Attila Volgyi/Xinhua /Landov hide caption

itoggle caption Attila Volgyi/Xinhua /Landov

The Two-Way - News Blog

May The Fourth Be With You: 'Star Wars' Fans Celebrate A Faraway Galaxy

Yoda, Chewbacca and a phalanx of stormtroopers are all over the Internet today, as fans celebrate Star Wars Day — drawn from a pun on May 4. We've collected some of our favorite postings.

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