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Philly’s bus riders deserve better | Morning Newsletter

And, the strain on school nurses.

Good morning.

Today, I’m bringing you our architecture critic’s stance on how Philly’s failure to improve conditions for intercity bus riders is an equity issue.

And the city has a dire school nurse shortage. Also, if you have a small business that was hammered by the remnants of Hurricane Ida, there might be some relief.

OK, let’s get into it.

— Ashley Hoffman (@_AshleyHoffman,

Philadelphia’s Megabus stop was forced to give up its location on JFK Boulevard and relocate to Schuylkill Avenue.

That move could have been an opportunity for the city to create some basic amenities for riders who wait on the sidewalk in all weather conditions, from searing heat to pouring rain. Instead, the city simply shifted Megabus from one barren sidewalk to another.

Architecture critic Inga Saffron writes that it’s time for city officials to recognize that low-cost intercity buses are a crucial part of Philadelphia’s transportation network and that improving conditions on the sidewalk is a pressing equity issue.

It’s exhausting to be Anne Smith right now. In a school of 900 students, she’s the only school nurse. No wonder she says she’s drowning. By the time she left the school building on a recent night, she had spent a dozen hours working, saw 21 students, and tested 10 for COVID-19.

“They don’t have the manpower to handle the pandemic,” Smith told our education reporter Kirsten Graham. “One nurse in each school can’t do it.” Worst of all, not every city school has even one.

Smith is one of the many school nurses who is considered to be doing two whole jobs right now. Answering the call as the school nurse and wearing the chief COVID-19 officer hat in the building. The challenges of a full-time nurse have piled up: There’s the contact tracing, those COVID-19 tests, the mountains of compliance work, and coping with the lack of supplies.

School nurses we talked with are saying it’s a lonely, high-stakes job, and some have had enough. Keep reading to find out what everyone’s saying about the school nurse shortage right now.

Reopening resources

  1. Here’s our latest list of restaurants, large performance venues, universities, and gyms in the Philly region where you need to show proof of vaccination.

  2. Here’s where to get a COVID-19 test in the Philadelphia region.

  3. Should you laminate your vaccination card? What if you lose it? Here are the dos and don’ts.

  4. Here’s what you need to know about medical exemptions.

  5. It could be time to upgrade your face gear. Which masks work best?

What you need to know today

  1. Announcement: $25M in grants are going to 41 watershed projects along the Delaware River, to improve the water quality. One next step: a water trail.

  2. Two of the four suspects in the Pat’s Steaks killing have turned themselves in, Philly police say.

  3. A Chester County man admitted he voted illegally in his son’s name in the 2020 election.

  4. A Norristown man was sentenced to death three times. Now, during his latest trial, he is again insisting he is innocent.

  5. The Philly prison system generates a grand jury investigation and more court-ordered reforms.

Through your eyes | #OurPhilly

We love a living wall.

Tag your Instagram posts with #OurPhilly, and we’ll pick our favorite each day to feature here and give you a shout-out.

That's interesting

🧂 Restaurant reporter Michael Klein suggests that you check out Kevin Wong’s Cantonese-inspired Far East Descendant in Chinatown.

⚾ Phillies’ playoff push: Has Bryce Harper clinched MVP status? And, is Joe Girardi’s job safe?

💰 This is how Philly-area businesses hurt by Ida can get help from FEMA and the Small Business Administration.


“Still, she added, it’s jarring to see Beyoncé and Jay-Z as the glamorous faces of a business with roots so deeply steeped in colonialism,” our columnist Elizabeth Wellington writes about the Tiffany diamond ad that became the talk of the internet, calling it problematic.

  1. “In the midst of another chaotic news cycle from Afghanistan risking many oversimplifications of the Middle East, perhaps it is worth pausing to remember that no hatred — and no tightly held belief about one’s friends and enemies — lasts forever,” John Ghazvinian, executive director of the Middle East Center, writes that America once had a love affair with Iran that was born in Philly.

  2. These are the next steps to take to protect abortion in Philly, writes The Inquirer Editorial Board, which operates independently from the newsroom.

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