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Author: This American Life

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Serial is a podcast from the creators of This American Life, hosted by Sarah Koenig. Serial unfolds one story - a true story - over the course of a whole season. The show follows the plot and characters wherever they lead, through many surprising twists and turns. Sarah won't know what happens at the end of the story until she gets there, not long before you get there with her. Each week she'll bring you the latest chapter, so it's important to listen in, starting with Episode 1. New episodes are released on Thursday mornings.
40 Episodes
Chana has traced the history of the school from its founding and come to the present. But now: One unexpected last chapter. Last year, the school district for BHS mandated a change in the zoning process to ensure all middle schools would be racially integrated. No longer can white families hoard resources in a few select schools. Black and Latino parents have been demanding this change since the late 1950s. The courts have mandated it. Chana asks: How did this happen? And is this a blueprint for real, systemic change?
Public schools are inequitable because the school systems are maniacally loyal to white families. We can’t have equitable public education unless schools limit the disproportionate power of white parents. But is that even possible? Chana finds two schools that are trying to do just that, and both are actually inside the 293 building. One is downstairs in the basement, where a charter school called Success Academy opened about 7 years ago. The other is upstairs at BHS, the newly renamed SIS.
Chana Joffe-Walt explores how white parents can shape a school — even when they aren’t there. She traces the history of I.S. 293, now the Boerum Hill School for International Studies, from the 1980s through the modern education reforms of the 2000s. In the process, Chana talks to alumni who loved their school and never questioned why it was on the edge of a white neighborhood. To them, it was just where everyone went. But she also speaks to some who watched the school change over the years and questioned whether a local community school board was secretly plotting against 293.
Chana Joffe-Walt searches the New York City Board of Education archives for more information about the School for International Studies, which was originally called I.S. 293. In the process, she finds a folder of letters written in 1963 by mostly white families in Cobble Hill, Brooklyn. They are asking for the board to change the proposed construction of the school to a site where it would be more likely to be racially integrated. It’s less than a decade after Brown v. Board of Education, amid a growing civil rights movement, and the white parents writing letters are emphatic that they want an integrated school. They get their way and the school site changes — but after that, nothing else goes as planned.
Nice White Parents - Ep. 1

Nice White Parents - Ep. 1


It’s 2015 and one Brooklyn middle school is about to receive a huge influx of new students.  Reporter Chana Joffe Walt follows  what happens when the School for International Studies’s 6th grade class swells from 30 mostly Latino, Black and Middle Eastern students, to a class of 103 —an influx almost entirely driven by white families. Everyone wants “what’s best for the school” but it becomes clear that they don’t share the same vision of what “best” means. For more information about this show, visit
The state of Ohio decides where Joshua belongs.
A teenager decides to cooperate.
If you listen closely to the trash-talking, you start to get the message.
Life after you put a cop in jail.
Don’t tell the judges, but the prosecutors have the most power in the building.
What happens when the right evidence points to the wrong man?
The smell of raw marijuana + acting nervous + hands in pockets = ?
When a judge believes he knows you better than you know yourself.
A young woman at a bar is slapped on the butt. So why’s she the one in jail?
The Season Two finale: What is Bowe’s fault, and what isn’t?
Are you hearing what I’m hearing?
You don’t make peace with your friends. 
Woulda, coulda, shoulda…
It makes sense if you’re Bowe Bergdahl.
February 2016: Sarah Koenig ducks back into the Adnan Syed case for a few days. There’s a hearing in Baltimore—a court proceeding that’s been nearly sixteen years in the making. Syed’s attorney will introduce new evidence, and present a case for why his conviction should be overturned. Sarah and producer Dana Chivvis will discuss what happens, day by day.
Comments (1199)

Sérgio Lopes

Great content, but I can't handle the vocal fry. Sorry, but it's unbearable.

Nov 12th

Sara Fitzpatrick

who voices the better health ad?

Nov 5th


I don't get the hype with this podcast? Even after listening, all the points in this are incredibly weak and do nothing to prove his innocence. He 99% killed her, and Jay likely helped.

Oct 7th

Dana Cross Morin

I think Jay is the one we should be looking at, he knew she was strangled and he had the phone and car!! He's the guilty one. #TrueCrime #Serial

Oct 2nd


it doesn't play

Oct 1st

Matthew Lescohier

y665uk5t bbn n h hv58 t on bgg 6ukkukyjjn bgg hjm mfg CV my 5 cgnmj666j v cb.hnnjnjnn hhj nm ou hn6vbb iut CD

Sep 18th


@50:36: That guy's clearly never been to Malaysia. (I wonder if he confused Malaysia with Myanmar, since he followed with Burma. American geography.)

Sep 17th
Reply (1)


the White, the Black, the Hispanic ... Let's forget about the Asian, because they don't exist? Seriously, this has little to do with racism. It's everything to do with social economical class. And if you see PTA as a commercial entity, then everything makes sense.

Sep 16th

Katrina Sinz

The content of the show, i am referring to the PTA meetings, is actually very interesting. however, the reporter, great voice that she has, is misleading and a little to goal set on making this particular school case about race. i have only heard the first episode, and frankly, I am not seeing a race story, frankly. It seems to be more of a story about a group of people who feel their role and importance in the community is being taken away by the newcomers. change is hard, no matter what color you are.

Sep 13th


Loomis was right about one thing: the cops always learn a lesson--the same lesson--that there's no police accountability.

Sep 12th


Sadly ironically, the concept and application of "probable cause" is typically based on a basic misunderstanding of probability. Cops, prosecutors, judges, and many dim-witted legislators typically rely on a colloquial, unexamined version of the following flawed, innumerate reasoning: 1. "Given that someone did criminal act Y, there is a high probability they preceded it with behavior X." (E.g., fleeing arrest preceded by "furtive movements".) 2. Therefore, X is probable cause re: expectation of Y. (E.g., "furtive movements" mean the suspect is likely about to flee arrest.) No. P(X|Y) does not imply P(Y|X). The consequences of not understanding such a simple concept can be dire. This is one of the *many* severe costs of poor education in the U.S.

Sep 12th


Apologists for excessive police force love to convict people of police officers' paranoid suspicions. For them, "I was scared he might do X" = "It's justifiable for me to act as if he was going to do X." In that case, civil liberties are imaginary. That is as dangerous and stupid a level of blind deference as one can concoct.

Sep 12th


I'm not listening to this bs... 👎🏻

Sep 11th


This vile judge isn't administering the law, let alone impartially; he's issuing his personal judgements based on his own intuitions and biases. He seems utterly incapable of separating himself from the public office he holds, as if society has merely handed over the power of the state to enact his views and whims. I found nearly everything he said reprehensible, ignorant, self-aggrandizing, damning, and severely corrosive to the rule of law.

Sep 10th

Rusty Black

Bell curve. Saved you guys hours of wasted time.

Sep 8th

Steve Hughes

This latest series is very boring. Heard two and on Reading the synopsis of the others, I'm out. As a brit, I honestly don't give two shits about americas racist problems. Fingers crossed that future stories are as interesting and thought captivating as seasons 1-3

Sep 2nd

larry g


Aug 29th


why is there no commenting in Season 3.. OMG. I fully get how furious people are living there

Aug 27th

Micheal Nickolls

I got bored with "Nice white parents" Season 1 & 2 were awesome!! please do more of this.

Aug 26th

Papillione E

As a non-American I still get stunned how fucked up the USA is. How is teaching children to go to school sick a good thing? That is a fucked up "merit". It might get other people sick and damage the body if you overexhert yourself while working sick later in life. And especially now when we live in a pandemic where the worst thing you could do is going to work or school sick. How is it good to put young children under such pressure? Do people really think that will make their children happy later in life. Amongst other things because working hard is not always as rewarded as people make it out to be. You have nepotism, sexism and racism at workplaces and often enough people get promotions not because they worked harder than you. Not to forget that you might put your kids up to having anxiety sooner or later.

Aug 26th
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