30th Street stride (Instagram/@photolope)

Internship programs help special needs students find work

The Philadelphia School District has four off-site programs that help students with special needs find employment after graduation. 

But the programs aren’t well-publicized, and teachers and admins wish more of the district’s thousands of special needs students were taking advantage.

→ How the internships work

Project Career Launch participants Kayla Galanaugh (left) and Alani Connelly (right) are currently interning at the Penn Museum and taking life skills courses at the Drexel campus. (Elizabeth DeOrnellas for Billy Penn)

Old City’s Painted Bride is headed for demolition (again)

A celebrated mosaic in Old City created by artist Isaiah Zagar could be demolished under a new proposal by the building’s owner.

  • The Painted Bride Art Center has been the subject of a 6-year battle. The arts group’s decision to sell the property was first blocked in court, then allowed — only to have development plans get blocked again.

It took just 17 people’s votes to bring the compromise project to a halt. Meir Rinde looks at some key numbers behind the protracted preservation saga.

→ Roof decks in the new plan: 2

The Painted Bride’s facade in Old City, with its Isaiah Zagar mirrored mosaic. (Emma Lee/WHYY)

RECAP: What else happened?

$ = paywalled

  • If you’ve applied for a Pa. mail ballot in the past, you may soon receive a ballot request form in the mail. You can fill it out on paper or go online — deadline is May 9. [@PAStateDept/Pa. Gov]
  • Pennsylvania counties applied wildly varying rules for mail ballots in the November 2022 election, which disenfranchised some voters, per a new review. [Spotlight PA]
  • SEPTA recently said building a Roosevelt Boulevard subway was too expensive, but PennDOT wants the proposed rail line to be included in a coming state study on improvements for the highway that connects Northeast Philly to Center City. The DRVPC will consider the plan at its Thursday meeting. [Inquirer$/BP 2022/YouTube/DRVPC]
  • A Philly Starbucks must rehire two baristas it illegally fired, per an NLRB ruling, which said the cafe surveilled, threatened, and otherwise harassed other employees organizing in their workplaces. [Axios/Bloomberg]
  • Oh, you wanted another private club in Philadelphia? Restaurateur Teddy Sourias (of Tinsel, Bru, and others) has jumped into the game with 101 Unlockd. Location is ~somewhere~ in Center City, and memberships start at $1,000 per year. [Instagram/NBC10]
Spring Garden Station on SEPTA’s Broad Street Line (Danya Henninger/Billy Penn)

Weekly brief on gun violence prevention (with PCGVR)

We publish this report each week in partnership with the Philadelphia Center for Gun Violence Reporting

By the numbers in Philadelphia

  • 36: Shooting victims recorded last week, vs. 33 the week prior. [City Controller via @PCGVR]
  • 213: Shooting victims this year so far, down 33% vs. this time last year. [PCGVR]
  • 62: Year-to-date homicides, down 14% vs. last year’s pace; up 55% vs. five years ago [Philly Police]


Happy birthday, Reading Terminal Market! Mayor Kenney helps celebrate 130 years at the historic but thriving Center City shopping locus.


🍺 Billy Penn Quizzo: Our monthly trivia night is back! We’re at Attic Brewing in Germantown this month, with three rounds of questions, happy hour specials, and great prizes for the winners. Free RSVP here. (6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 28)

🎤 Mayoral forum: Billy Penn, WHYY, and CeaseFirePA host the “100th Mayor: Restoring Safety Forum.” The in-person audience is limited, but you can watch the livestream via Facebook. (7 to 9 p.m. Wednesday, March 1)

🏊🏽 Get wet to help Philadelphia public pools open: The Philly Phreeze polar plunge happens at Kelly Pool in Fishtown, with all proceeds supporting lifeguard recruitment. (12 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 25)