STATE OF OPPORTUNITY. Can Kids in Michigan Get Ahead?
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This special reporting project wrapped up in May 2017. Read more.
Stockbridge is a village similar to many places around the state. The economy is tough, industry has gone, and the school system is one of few ways kids from the town can get a leg up. This is an inside look into this small town school district trying to make sure their kids have educational opportunity, even in the face of shrinking state aid and a tough economy. In addition to Sarah's reports, the Stockbridge project has moving and interesting radio stories, audio diaries, and photography from youth journalists at Stockbridge High School.

Stockbridge Youth Journalists; A small town full of history and closeness

I’m the “new kid”, for the first time in my life. I moved two and a half hours away from my hometown Armada. I was starting school soon; afraid I wasn’t going to fit in. I had my sister, a year younger than me, was by my side but, that didn’t stop my nerves from jumping all over the place.

We took a tour of Stockbridge High School a week before school started. The outside light dimmed the halls as we walked around with our mom and the school principal dodging chairs, desks and cleaning equipment.

Afterwards, we walked in to the office and there were a few kids sitting in there waiting to see their counselor. The kids stared at us, with wide eyes I felt said they had never seen “new kids” before.

I thought to myself that a way to find my place was to find out about Stockbridge’s history. The first settlers arrived in Stockbridge in 1835.  Elijah Smith made the plans to make the land a town site, he had originally planned for the town to be named Pekin.

Stockbridge was registered in the County Register of Deeds in 1843. Railroad tracks were around in Stockbridge in 1883. Stockbridge received electricity in 1910, only for businesses and to customers in the evenings. In 1912, electricity was opened for 24-hour service to residential customers.

I’m starting to find my place and how I fit in to the school district and most importantly the little town full of historical secrets. 

            -Kyle Frisby

In Stockbridge, one of the town centers is the Town Hall. Its main used for performances and discussions that the public may participate in such as the Town Hall Players.

The Town Hall Players are a group of people from the Stockbridge community interested in theater, acting, and stage set-up. 

The town hall is also used for discussions that the public are able to participate in. Some of which include visiting other landmarks around the community, or discussing the history of the Stockbridge community.

Also, everyone in Stockbridge community can go to the town hall to participate in debates or discussions, or to go and watch a performance by the Town Hall Players. It’s not just for certain groups of people, It’s for everyone.

By the people coming together, Stockbridge is able to keep its community close both socially and physically.

         -Selena Alvarado

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