Exposing the inconvenient truth about schools

May 25, 2011

NEW YORK--The new documentary film The Inconvenient Truth Behind Waiting for Superman premiered on May 19 at New York City's historic Riverside Church in Harlem to more than 600 teachers, students, parents and community members.

Organized by the producers of the film, the Grassroots Education Movement (GEM), the event also included a panel discussion with education historian Diane Ravitch, plus teachers, parents and students.

The movie drew rapturous applause from attendees and provided some much-needed inspiration to people who were stressed from high-stakes testing, threats of school closures and layoffs, and the national "blame the teachers" rhetoric typified by last year's much-hyped documentary Waiting for "Superman," to which this movie is a reply.

After the film, Ravitch addressed the crowd. "We have had many problems in our school system," she said, "but we've never had a Wall Street corporate takeover of the school system where the voices of parents and teachers are silenced and ignored."

"It's inspiring, both the movie and to see all the people here," a third-grade teacher from the Bronx said. "I was starting to feel like 'the sky is falling' in my classroom."

Lisa, a third-year teacher from the South Bronx, said, "It reminded me of the potential and role of the union."

The filmmakers, who have been deluged with requests for the DVD, have set up a website to take orders. Already, there are hundreds of screenings being planned nationwide. The producers hope that people will use the film as a tool to organize communities to fight against the attack on public schools.

Learn more about the film at The Inconvenient Truth Behind Waiting for Superman website. Order your own copy of the DVD.

Further Reading

From the archives