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Dispatches: Five Essential Reads From the Past Week

A collection of some of our most important and timely stories, from an interview with Al Gore about climate change to a look at a unique school improvement model that's showing promising results.
Al Gore on a panel at the Climate Reality Project's 2018 training in Los Angeles.

Al Gore on a panel at the Climate Reality Project's 2018 training in Los Angeles.

A rundown of five of our most important and timely stories from the past week.

  1. Al Gore has been at the vanguard of the fight against climate change for decades, and he's still at it. This past week, the former vice president was in Los Angeles for a summit hosted by the non-profit Climate Reality Project. Staff writer Kate Wheeling managed to catch up with Gore to talk about climate messaging, Trump's failures on climate, and what we can do to combat global warming. Read Wheeling's interview here.
  2. In 2015, a quarter of all murdered Canadian women were indigenous despite only making up lass than 5 percent of the total population. And the problem isn't confined to Canada, as contributing writer Terese Marie Mailhot discusses in her stirring essay about the continued disappearances of native women, violence against this vulnerable group is a scourge across North America, and not enough is being done to stop it. Read Mailhot's essay here.
  3. An odd, but understandable, viral trend resulted from the Trump administration's stringent policy of family separations at the border: Videos of families being reunited were spread across social media and television. Kathi Valeii talked to experts who note that the long-term trauma suffered as a result of these separations is evident even in these short videos. Read Valeii's story here.
  4. Worries about how a notoriously climate change-skeptical White House will influence national-level climate assessments have put more pressure on local and state-level scientists to produce reports and actionable plans as the effects of a warming planet become more apparent. Staff writer Francie Diep spoke with scientists from Florida, California, and Montana about the growing importance of state-level assessments. Read Diep's story here.
  5. A unique school improvement model that focuses on students' strengths and teachers' relationship with the classroom has generated consistent improvement in schools of all kinds, all across the country. But you've probably never heard of it. Tara García Mathewson reports on this innovative, and effective, program. Read Mathewson's story here.

This dispatch originally appeared in The Lede, the weekly Pacific Standard email newsletter for premium members. The Lede gives premium members greater access to Pacific Standard stories, staff, and contributors in their inbox every week. While helping to support journalism in the public interest, members also receive a print magazine subscription, early access to feature stories, and access to an ad-free version of