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INDEPENDENT LENS: Whatever It Takes

Airs Sunday, April 4, 2010 at 11 p.m. on KPBS TV

Above: This film chronicles the struggles and triumphs of the first year of the Bronx Center for Science & Mathematics, an innovative public high school in New York City’s South Bronx. Pictured: Sharifea strikes a defiant pose standing outside of school.

Principal Tom challenges Sharifea to commit to her studies.
Enlarge this image

Above: Principal Tom challenges Sharifea to commit to her studies.

This film chronicles the struggles and triumphs of the first year of the Bronx Center for Science & Mathematics, an innovative public high school in New York City’s South Bronx. This deeply emotional, character-driven documentary focuses on the school’s dynamic rookie principal and a spunky ninth-grade girl with big dreams but even bigger obstacles.

The personal stories of the school’s students and staff call to mind larger themes of school reform and the need for educators, parents and policy makers to prioritize the transformation of the public school system so that all children can receive a quality education.

Grittily realistic, yet ultimately triumphant, “Whatever It Takes” paints a compelling picture of cutting-edge ideas and dedicated individuals, united in their vision to restore hope to a broken community. By Christopher Wong.

Video

Video Excerpt: Independent Lens: Whatever It Takes

Above: This film chronicles the struggles and triumphs of the first year of the Bronx Center for Science & Mathematics, an innovative public high school in New York City’s South Bronx.

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