Race to NoWhere-Part 2 and Next Steps

In January, the Reading Public Schools hosted a showing of the documentary film, Race to Nowhere, which was attended by over 400 parents, students, and staff.  In a previous blog entry, there were several suggestions made in the film as to what parents, students, teachers, administrators, and the community could do to reduce the stress and anxiety in students.

When we surveyed the people who attended the showing of the film that evening, several requests were made to show the film again.  Because of this input, the Reading Public Schools will be hosting another screening of the documentary film, Race to Nowhere, on Tuesday, March 15th at 7:00 PM at the Reading Memorial High School Fine and Performing Arts Center.  The January screening was attended by hundreds of community members and prompted the beginning of an important community conversation.  Our goal is to continue the conversation that evening and to plan next steps.  If you were unable to attend the January showing, don’t miss this opportunity to view this thought-provoking film and participate in the ongoing discussion.  Tickets may be purchased in advance for $10 at the following site:


Race to Nowhere is an acclaimed documentary which focuses on current issues facing students, parents, and educators across our nation.  Oprah.com says, “You’ll be inspired to make some changes, big and small, for the health of your kids.”  The George Lucas Educational Foundation says, “It’s a wake-up call to all of us who care about children, the purpose of schools, and how we define success in American education.”  And Daniel Pink, best-selling author of A Whole New Mind, says, “[The film] raises important questions that educators and parents must confront.a provocative conversation starter of a film.”  It is hoped by the filmmakers that the film will bring communities together to examine current assumptions on how to best prepare America’s youth to become healthy, bright, contributing, and leading citizens in the 21st century.  For more information or resources about the film, visit the website at http://www.racetonowhere.com.  To view a trailer of the film, go to this link.

Following the film that evening we will be having a panel discussion of parents, teachers, administrators, and students with the audience.  This focused conversation will begin to outline the next steps in the process.  After that evening, the Reading Public Schools will be forming a task force of teachers, administrators, parents, and students who will review the suggestions outlined in the film and make a series of recommendations to the community on how to reduce the stress and anxiety for our students.  Additional information on the task force will be available at the showing on March 15.

In the next several weeks, we will also give students the opportunity to view the film during the school day and we will be showing the film at our April Share Conference on April 14th.

If you have any questions about this important topic, please do not hesitate to contact the Superintendent’s Office at 781-944-5800 or by email at jdoherty@reading.k12.ma.us.

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