Documentary Exploring Values In Schools

Values Go to School: Exploring Ethics with Children, a new documentary to be aired over public television stations, will premiere at Sarah Lawrence College on Friday, November 18 at 4:30 p.m. in Reisinger Concert Hall. The program is free and open to the public, and will include a panel discussion with educators featured in the documentary, members of the College’s Child Development Institute’s faculty who served as experts and the producer. For more information, please call 914-395-2411.

The third documentary in the Learning Child Series produced by Jonathan Diamond Associates in association with the Sarah Lawrence Child Development Institute (CDI), Values Go to School focuses on students from kindergarten to high school in four diverse public schools interacting with teachers and with each other to work through issues of conflict resolution, friendship, ethnic identity, racial and cultural understanding, the importance of work, and the role of open discourse in achieving a sense of community. Interviews with teachers, administrators and the Child Development Institute faculty, as well as visits with students’ families and conversations with their parents, complement the classroom scenes.

The documentary suggests that ethical issues are inseparable from the life of the classroom and the school, says Margery Franklin, Director of CDI. “What kinds of values do we want to uphold and foster? How are ethical values communicated to children? What role should schools play in facilitating children’s understanding of ethical questions?” Values Go to School, she says, “documents the ways in which schools can play a central role in the development of reflective consciousness about ethical questions and provide the context for encouraging genuinely humanistic values.”

Through its outreach to teachers, parents, administrators and child development professionals Sarah Lawrence, the Child Development Institute communicates the College’s progressive education ideology and provides a forum for the discussion of issues in education.