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Race to Nowhere

Written by Paula Hermann, College of Education
January 5, 2011

The College of Education at Seattle University is launching a three-part conversation on the state of education by hosting a national screening of the film "Race to Nowhere" on Tuesday, Jan. 25 at 7 p.m. in Pigott Auditorium. Guests are encouraged to stay for a brief discussion following the film.   

The documentary raises awareness of the stresses among young people and points to the need to radically change the national dialogue on education. In the film, a concerned mother-turned-filmmaker aims her camera at the high-stakes, high-pressure culture that has invaded schools and children’s lives, creating unhealthy, disengaged, unprepared and stressed-out youth.  

“This film ignites emotion in educators, administrators, parents and students, so it is an appropriate conversation starter,” said Sue Schmitt, dean of the College of Education. “There have been multiple national debates about education reform recently, and we are pleased to have the opportunity to lead the conversation in Seattle.”   

The film is the first of three events in the series, "Conversation Education: Stimulating the dialogue. Changing the future." The college is hosting the series in 2011 to begin a local dialogue on current issues and education reform. Included in the series will be local and national education experts and advocates representing divergent views on reform. The college will co-host the movie "Waiting for Superman" on Wednesday, March 2 at 7 p.m. in Pigott Auditorium along with the Seattle University Magis Justice Education Forum. The controversial film, which has elevated national conversations on education reform, will conclude with a reflection hosted by a local panel of education experts. The series will culminate on Monday, May 9 with a forum featuring nationally renowned educators, policymakers, parents and education advocates. The panelists will be announced later this month.     

The series is a continuation of the College of Education’s focus on education reform issues that began in October 2010 when it hosted education historian and former assistant secretary of education, Diane Ravitch, in a forum “Race to Where?” That conversation centered on the damaging realities of education reform.  

Admission to the film is free; however, seats are limited and tickets must be reserved in advance at http://rtnseattleuniversity.eventbrite.com no later than Jan. 21.