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October 2013 Vol. 21. No. 1 Focus on Schools in Crisis

Notebook news

Documenting the impact of Philly school closings

By Wendy Harris on Oct 7, 2013 01:37 PM

Videographer Amy Yeboah worked this summer with the Notebook to complete a 30-minute documentary about this year’s wave of school closings. It’s called Goodbye to City Schools

The project took her inside four of the 24 schools that closed for good in June: Germantown High School, Bok Technical High School, Fairhill Elementary School, and University City High School. The project was made possible through a graduate fellowship position at the Notebook sponsored by the Samuel S. Fels Fund.

At 7 p.m. on Oct. 16, the documentary will be screened at an event hosted by the Notebook and the nonprofit Scribe Video Center, 4212 Chestnut St., as part of Scribe’s Storyville series.

An exhibit of still photos of recent school closings by a group of local photographers including Harvey Finkle, Notebook photographer, will also open that night at Scribe and will run through Jan. 17.

For information, call Scribe at 215-222-4201.

Yeboah, who holds a doctorate in African American studies from Temple University, conducted sitdown interviews with principals, teachers, and community members during the last days of the school year about the impact that school closings have had on the community. After weeks of collecting material and editing film, Yeboah completed the project in August.

In her film, Yeboah said, “You’ll see the faces of what school closing means: students’ faces, families’ faces. You’ll see hurt, you’ll see pain, you’ll see struggle, you’ll see frustration, you’ll see letdown and disappointment. You’ll see tears. You’ll see desks, you’ll see walls, you’ll see all these things that have been engulfed in two words: school closing.”

Storyville is $5, but free for Scribe members. For more information about the video, please contact the Notebook.

Comments (6)

Submitted by Rich Migliore (not verified) on October 7, 2013 3:06 pm
So Sad, "Goodbye to City Schools" .... Hello to corporate control -- the new Feudalism? Or a lesson in the importance of Democracy?
Submitted by Taxpayer (not verified) on October 7, 2013 3:43 pm
Bye Bye. The private sector will solve the problems that government bureaucrats couldn't.
Submitted by Lawrence A. Feinberg (not verified) on October 8, 2013 6:17 am
...or at least they'll make a few bucks from taxpayer money without any better results for the kids: Trombetta Gureghian Millken/Packard
Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on October 8, 2013 8:16 pm
Taxpayer, are you a cartoon agitator, or attention seeker? Are you for real?
Submitted by Rich Migliore (not verified) on October 8, 2013 7:27 am
The fact of the matter is that the cost of privatization and "entrepreneurism" has caused the School District's budget to "explode." What is worse and even more despicable and unconscionable is that so many of Philadelphia's schoolchildren are being purposefully deprived of even the most basic necessities of even a minimal education in this insidious game of power, money and politics to turn public schools into money making entities for the rich and powerful. Only the cold, callous and the unfeeling would sit by and allow this to happen to children in America. What is being to done in Philadelphia is not only heartless -- but it lacks wisdom. What have WE become as a People?
Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on October 16, 2013 1:49 pm
The bottom line is that suburban school districts can get over $28,000.00 per student while the poverty areas of our state get 12,000.00 and the charters get about 8500.00. Why are rich kids getting more money and a better education. NO ONE IS EVEN TALKING ABOUT THAT!!! Separate but equal.....I don't think so!

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