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Fall 2008 Vol. 16. No. 1 Focus on Immigrant Students

Activism around the city

Freedom Schools foster critical perspective on media

By by Sarah Peterson on Sep 10, 2008 11:00 PM

Media literacy was the focus as students and teachers from the Philadelphia Freedom Schools (PFS) celebrated the end of their summer program August 2 with a public event showcasing students’ social action and media projects.

The 3rd PFS Media Literacy Festival, held at Temple University, featured student- produced videos, research posters, musical performances, and a screening of a documentary on Barack Obama.

An estimated 1,600 K-8 students participated in summer programs at 15 different PFS sites around the city this year.

Students from the Fairhill Elementary program presented their video documenting neighborhood problems and their subsequent community beautification project. The Julia de Burgos program created a news segment entitled “Stop the Violence,” focusing on the influence of violence on TV and in movies.

And in a video from the “Say Yes to Education” program at Bryant Elementary, students analyzed media portrayals of African-Americans.

According to PFS manager Sedrick Miles, media literacy caught on as a regular component of their curriculum following PFS’s participation in a march, which was misinterpreted by news media as a request for more funding. This incident was a lesson in the influence of the media. Students are now encouraged to develop media literacy as a tool for social action.

Comments (1)

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on June 19, 2012 2:25 pm

I was in PFS when I was really young my mommy worked there her name is sis. Tammi she worked at the friends niaberhood giuld im LaShara baby. I am 13 now I love PFS with all my haert. When I was younger I would tell peopel one day I would own PFS. But PFS changed like crazy its juat not the same I wish it was.

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