DVDS

The Bad Kids

101 min. Keith Fulton & Lou Pepe, dist. by Good Docs, www.gooddocs.net. 2016. DVD UPC 715875239867. $129; public performance $349; acad. libs. $549; digital streaming $549. ED
COPY ISBN
OrangeReviewStarEveryone in school knows who the bad kids are: the one who are troubled, disruptive, feared, pitied, and/or often lonely. At Black Rock Continuation High School in California's Mojave Desert, the bad kids find a caring, supportive home. Vonda Viland, the dynamic principal of this alternative school, directs a staff dedicated to these students and committed to seeing them graduate. We follow life in the school for one year, focusing on three at-risk students, and come to understand the outside forces such as poverty that account for these students being in an alternative school. A new father who has difficulty supporting the child he loves, a young woman dealing with sexual abuse, and a young man from an unstable home are among the students struggling to graduate and go on with their lives. Viland and her staff never stop fighting for them.
VERDICT An intelligent and penetrating documentary that along with similar films SelectED and Paper Tigers offers a useful blueprint for creating schools that help students succeed. Recommended for academic education collections as well as public collections serving parents and those in government setting community and state education policies.

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