It is a saying that is often heard among those who have faced addiction. It goes something like this: “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting a different result.”
Drugs, alcohol … and education. They all seem to be categories that fit into this “definition” of insanity.
On Dec. 15, FilmWorks Entertainment will release on DVD documentary filmmaker Kayla McCormick’s SelectED, an insightful, thought-provoking look at the competition and process of getting into Chicago’s Whitney Young High School.
This is THE public high school in the city of Chicago to get into. It is, for the lucky ones, perhaps their only “ticket out of poverty.”
Consider this, 10,000 apply each year for the 350 open enrollment spots. The competition is fierce. But beyond this “lottery,” why does this particular school work, while so many others in Chicagoland are failing?
For one full year McCormick tracked the process; the students; their parents — their hopes and dreams — and the result is a finished film that is every bit as riveting in its storytelling as any Hollywood thriller. Clearly, those involved with the educational process at Whitney Young High School have found a way to break this educational cycle of insanity.
SelectED shines some light on just how that works. Can it be replicated? And what of those who don’t make the cut?
Bonus features include extended and additional sequences that did not make the final cut of the film.