Schools Continue to Segregate Us Sixty Years after Little Rock Nine; Teach Us All Premieres at SXSWedu®

  • Teach Us All premiers at SXSWedu® on Tuesday, March 7, 2017.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Sonia Lowman: (310) 570-4744; (310) 804-8250 (cell); slowman@mff.org
Sabrina Skacan: (310) 570-4773; (310) 989-5875 (cell); sskacan@mff.org

Teach Us All Premieres at SXSWedu®

 Tuesday, March 7, 2017 at 1:30 p.m.

Room 19AB, Austin Convention Center

SANTA MONICA, Calif., (February 27, 2017) —Segregation, Double Segregation and Triple Segregation. These are modern terms for an age old problem: disproportional access to quality education. Although Brown vs. the Board of Education ruled state laws separating children by the color of their skin unconstitutional, de facto segregation today divides America’s students by race, income and language. Sixty years after the Little Rock Nine faced violent resistance desegregating Central High, America’s schools continue to represent the key battleground of the Civil Rights Movement. Teach Us All, a documentary film and social justice movement, demonstrates powerful lessons from history within an urgent context, emphasizing the need for unity and collective action to rectify the disparities among America’s children.

Teach Us All, an 80-minute documentary, premieres at SXSWedu® on Tuesday, March 7, 2017, at 1:30 p.m. in Room 19AB of the Austin Convention Center. Panel discussion marking the launch of the Teach Us All social justice campaign to follow.

With its school district hanging in the balance following a state takeover in January 2015, contemporary Little Rock presents a microcosm of the inequities and challenges manifesting in classrooms all across America. Through case studies in Little Rock, New York City, and Los Angeles, Teach Us All seeks to bring the critical lessons of history to bear on the current state of U.S. education and investigate: 60 years later, how far have we come—or not come—and where do we go from here?

In search of answers, Teach Us All gathered the expertise of Civil Rights icons, historians, policymakers, teachers, and parents alongside the most important point-of-view: students.

“Throughout history, young people like the Little Rock Nine have been powerful agents of social change. Our film aims to spark a movement among students to own the conversation and create change,” says Sonia Lowman, Teach Us All director and producer. “Education remains their gateway to opportunity, yet it balances on a precipice within a system that fails to repair itself.”

The percentage of minority students attending “hyper-segregated” schools has nearly tripled since 1988. A poor student who cannot read on grade level by the 3rd grade is 13 times less likely to graduate high school. A high-school dropout faces a 4-times-higher-probability of going to prison. Without a high school diploma, that student will earn an average of 25% less income over their lifetime. The vicious cycle repeats, and as the child fails, society suffers. America’s future depends on the present’s determination to more fairly allocate resources and improve educational effectiveness.

Following the film debut, Lowman will lead a panel discussion featuring Sarah Camiscoli, director/founder of IntegrateNYC4me, Brandon Cardet-Hernandez, principal of Bronx Academy of Letters, Hebh Jamal, student activist/founder of NYC Diversity Youth Council and Eric Wilson, CEO of Noble Impact. Their dialog will focus on ways in which students, educators, parents and educational stakeholders can directly engage with the Teach Us All project and take leadership in today’s movement for an educational system based on quality and equity.

Serving as the platform for a national social justice movement, Teach Us All issues a call to action for today’s youth to carry forth the legacy of the Little Rock Nine. After SXSWedu, the Teach Us All campaign visits the battlegrounds to host screenings at schools and cultivate community-based efforts through concerted social action.

Add your voice. Join the movement. Create change. Follow and use the #TeachUsAll hashtag on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and join us at https://www.facebook.com/teachusallfilm,

https://twitter.com/teachusallfilm, and https://www.instagram.com/teachusallfilm.

 For more information and press notes about Teach Us All, please visit www.TeachUsAllFilm.org.

 About SXSWedu®

The SXSWedu Conference & Festival fosters innovation in learning by hosting a diverse and energetic community of stakeholders across a variety of backgrounds in education. The annual four-day event affords registrants open access to engaging sessions, immersive workshops, interactive learning experiences, film screenings, early-stage startups, business opportunities and networking. Through collaboration, creativity and social action, SXSWedu empowers its global community to Connect. Discover. Impact. SXSWedu is a component of the South by Southwest® family of conferences and festivals. Join the passionate and innovative community at SXSWedu, March 6-9, 2017 in Austin, Texas. For more information, please visit http://sxswedu.com.

 About the Lowell Milken Center for Unsung Heroes

The Lowell Milken Center for Unsung Heroes (LMC) works to transform classrooms and communities through student-driven projects that discover Unsung Heroes from history and teach the power of one. Through project-based learning, LMC collaborates with students and educators across diverse disciplines to highlight role models who have made a profound and positive impact on the course of history. By championing these Unsung Heroes, students, educators and communities discover their own power and responsibility to effect positive change in the world. To date, LMC has reached over 10,000 schools and 1.3 million students.

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