518-439-4949 Ext: 429
John Purcell has worked at Spotlight Newspapers for more than two and a half years and covers Albany County suburbs.
Purcell covers the towns of Guilderland and New Scotland, the villages of Altamont and Voorheesville and Albany County news and feature stories. He also covers the school districts of Guilderland and Voorheesville. Previously, he covered Schenectady County for Spotlight Newspapers.
In the New York Press Association's 2011 Better Newspaper Contest he received third place honors in Spot News Coverage for his story on the aftermath of Tropical Storm Irene. Also, in NYPA's 2010 contest he received honorable mention for best news story.
Before joining Spotlight, he interned at The Legislative Gazette covering state government. He graduated from SUNY New Paltz with a B.A. in Journalism. Also, he is a Schenectady County native.
Indian Ladder Farms showcases baby animals and activities
Baby animals returned to Indian Ladder Farms in Altamont on Saturday, May 4, with children clamoring to chicks, ducklings, bunnies, lambs, pigs and goats.
Family-friendly Go Green Day to feature recycling, demos, good eats
Go Green Day 2013 will be held Saturday, April 27, at Farnsworth Middle School in Guilderland. Several area groups worked together to create the educational event and recycling drop off, along with opportunities to donate a variety of items to local causes and organizations.
New standardized tests have parents, educators worried about effects on students
On Tuesday, April 16, students in third to eighth grade across New York will sit down for the first day of standardized tests that adhere to the Common Core Standards. But it has been months now that parents and educators have worried pupils are being pushed too far with the sudden shift to more rigorous standards.
New York’s students will start taking new standardized tests this year in the name of improving performance. So why are kids expected to fail?
Students in third to eighth grade will face English language arts and math tests adhering to Common Core Standards, national standards that were developed by looking at what students should achieve to be prepared for college.
Voorheesville holds Wellness Day to encourage an active, healthy lifestyle
Voorheesville Central School District’s Wellness Committee held its second Wellness Day at the high school and middle school Thursday, March 21, which was kicked off with BMX riders soaring into the air off a ramp in the gymnasium.
Voorheesville workshop takes a graphic approach to storytelling
Elementary students were creating their own characters instead of reading about them Friday, March 15, at Voorheesville Public Library Friday, during a workshop hosted by Matthew Laiosa.
Two Guilderland ‘Red Riders’ prepare for Tour de Cure
Pedaling for 50 miles on a bicycle would be an accomplishment for most, but for an 11-year-old with Type 1 diabetes, it is about more than just the ride.
Area legislators ask for increased state aid to schools
Public schools are in the budget limelight as local lawmakers call on Gov. Andrew Cuomo to modify aid distributions guidelines, while at the same time the state’s largest teachers union is suing to challenge the constitutionality of the state tax cap law.
Niskayuna Boy Scout collecting flags at drop boxes for proper disposal
After several years of dedication to Boy Scout Troop 34, Brandon Fine is collecting old, worn American flags for his Eagle Scout project, which was inspired by his late grandfather.
Unique chocolate treats offer break from Valentine’s Day tradition
While chocolate is often seen as a can’t-fail Valentines gift, the traditional heart-shaped box of sweets might strike some as clichéd. But for those looking to stray from convention will be met with a sweet surprise at Capital District candy shops.