1. ‘No Worse Fate Than Failure’

In top suburban high schools, anxiety is rampant for both students and teachers, driven by the pressure to achieve. The Pioneer Press conducts a months-long investigation.

2. Forsaken Egypt: Poverty Darkens Southern Illinois’s Beautiful Ohio River Valley Region

The southern tip of the state has its most intense rural poverty, and the population is shrinking and aging. The Southern examines a “forgotten” corner of Illinois.

3. Where Everybody Knows Your Name

Some of Chicago’s best restaurants keep data on what you like, what you don’t, and whether you’re a FOW (fish out of water) or a PP (potential problem). Chicago magazine looks inside the data.

4. Without Native Americans, Would We Have Chicago As We Know It?

Early on, explorers realized the future city was a good trading spot in the midst of rich farmland—because the natives had figured it out first. WBEZ’s Curious City answers the question.

5. Why Chicago’s Rebound Is in So Much Trouble

Its economy is doing well, and housing prices have stayed in check compared to other major cities. But its poor residents aren’t sharing in it, and they’re leaving, along with the middle class. Bloomberg View addresses the issue.

6. Postmodern Architecture at Risk, Part 2: The Saga Shifts to Chicago

Helmut Jahn’s Thompson Center is something of a financial albatross, but it’s also an undersung monument to an architectural style. The Los Angeles Times pays a visit.

7. On Being Midwestern: The Burden of Normality

It doesn’t have a story, and that’s the story. The Hedgehog Review reflects.

8. Youth Hockey for the Masses, the Brainchild of a Hedge-Fund Retiree

Hockey on Your Block gives Chicago children the chance to learn the game (and now figure skating) for free. The Sun-Times profiles Ray Lilja’s program.

9. What’s Missing from Springfield’s Response to Sexual Harassment

First: more input and guidance from women in a male-led effort. Chicago magazine talks to women in the statehouse.

10. Sloppy Record Keeping Allowed Chicago Cops to Avoid Being Punished for Misconduct

One officer was ordered suspended after waving a gun in a road rage. His five-day suspension took three years to get through the system. The Tribune and ProPublica collaborate on the story.