For my May 2012 cover story in American School Board Journal, I visited Joplin, Mo., site of the deadliest and costliest tornado in U.S. history.

These photos, taken on the six-month anniversary of the tragedy, show the high school that was demolished on graduation day, a devastated community starting to recover, and schools that were miraculously back in session when school opened in August 2011. To read the full narrative, go here.

Given my history with the school leaders in Joplin, I also wrote essays for my personal blog just after the tornado as well as for the magazine when the article came out. Both are now housed on the blog on this site.