GO PUBLIC: A Day in the Life of an American School District is a 90-minute documentary of one entire day in the Pasadena Unified School District. Pasadena is a racially and economically diverse community in Southern California with 28 public school campuses. GO PUBLIC tells the story of one full day from sun up to long after sundown.
Public education is a privilege and a right available to everyone in our country and 90% of the nations’ children attend public school. We provide a window into the world of one urban school district, the many dedicated people, the myriad of opportunities available and the complexity of effectively serving the needs of all students.
On May 8, 2012, fifty small camera crews followed a wide-ranging group of individuals who participate, attend, support and work in the School District. Teachers, students, principals, volunteers and many others revealed their unique involvement in what makes a public school district function. This film tells the story of public school at the moment things are happening. No voice-over narrative and no expert commentaries. By filming over one complete day, we had access to the struggles and resolutions that often occur many times in an average day. Through personal stories, GO PUBLIC is a film that articulates the experiences of navigating a typical day in public school.
This project is important now because too much focus has been placed on what is supposedly broken in public school education. There is room for improvement, but our cameras captured the many good things that go on every day in our public schools, the teamwork it takes and the textured richness for those involved. By telling the stories of individuals that work and participate in the schools, we encourage viewers to become informed and compassionate advocates for their community public schools.