An award-winning film about the high-pressure environment of American education, Race to Nowhere: The Dark Side of America’s Achievement Culture, will be screened Thursday, February 10, in Keene. There are two times and locations:
2:30 p.m., Mabel Brown Room, Young Student Center, Keene State College. (For AUNE and KSC Education faculty, staff, students and friends. RSVP to ACSR@antioch.edu)
5:30 p.m., Symonds Elementary School, 79 Park Avenue. (Open to the public)
The screenings are free. They are sponsored by the Antioch Center for School Renewal (ACSR) at Antioch University New England (AUNE), the Diverse Voices from the Field project at Keene State College’s Department of Education, and Monadnock Talks. Special thanks to the Symonds School PTA for their support.
Race to Nowhere criticizes a silent epidemic of cheating, bullying, apathy and teacher burnout for threatening today’s schools. “The film is important because it shifts the focus away from the punitive, blame-oriented measures and attitudes we’re seeing emerge in educational policy on the national level,” said Laura Thomas, director of the ACSR.
The film was produced and co-directed by Vicki Abeles, a former Wall Street lawyer and mother of three. Abeles has also started a grassroots campaign for local organizations to host community screenings and use the film to spark a national dialogue on the issues highlighted in the film.
ACSR is sponsoring the event as part of the launch of the National Elementary Essential Schools Collective (NEESC), a national consortium of schools focused on helping elementary schools move away from test-based instruction driven by the No Child Left Behind law. NEESC is creating a network of thirty-six pilot elementary schools in New England and three other regions, supported by Coalition of Essential Schools centers, which include ACSR.
ACSR is a service division of AUNE’s Department of Education that works with schools on training, evaluation and assessment, restructuring and other essential skills.
Diverse Voices from the Field is a project that brings speakers to Keene State who represent diversity in education to Keene State College with the goal of improving the preparation of future teachers for the multicultural world of public education in the United States. Its events are free and open to the public. Special effort is made to involve members of the teacher education faculty and teacher education students at the undergraduate and graduate level.
Monadnock Talks is an independent organization that encourages and promotes conversations to foster healthy development of children, families and the community. Previous Monadnock Talks events include discussion about child development, parenting and adoption with nationally recognized authors William Pollack, Mary Pipher, Jane Healy, Alfie Kohn and Joyce Maguire Pavao.