Movie: Race to Nowhere
Oakland Schools is screening the movie Race to Nowhere on March 10 from 6:30 to 8:30 PM. Typically, there is a discussion period afterward. Free tickets can be obtained at http://rtnoaklandschools.eventbrite.com/ but they are limited in number.
Many reviews say this is the antithesis to Waiting for Superman. It appears to focus on whether academic rigor and over-scheduling of activities are causing stress and psychosomatic illness in our children. There may be some validity to these concerns. With longer school days and organized sports replacing neighborhood stickball, there is less time for being a child. And some questions have been raised about whether homework is trying to make up in quantity what it lacks in quality or appropriateness to the individual student. Having to do three hours of busy work each night does seem like it would take a toll on a student.
I am concerned that this movie may be sending other messages that we should be concerned about. If the standard curriculum is presented as too rigorous, will there be a call to ease up on students? Can our country afford an even less rigorous curriculum? Are these children stressed because of the amount of work or because their self-esteem has been challenged for the first time? If the amount of work is too much or the curriculum is too rigorous at standard schools, why are we not seeing rampant psychological problems occurring at schools like the International Academy?
I encourage you to come view this movie and partake in any discussion afterward so that the voices of parents of advanced and gifted children can be heard.
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