Black Lives: Agents of Change, Failing Schools vs Community Education in America
The fifth episode of Black Lives contrasts failing public schools in New York and Philadelphia ghettos with community education efforts by Black Lives Matter organizers.
Due to systematic defunding, African American students attend schools with as many as 40 kids in a class. With no time to correct it, some teachers have quit assigning homework.. At the same time, many “underperforming” (ie underfunded) schools in African America communities have been closed to redirect public funding to privately run for-profit charter schools.
Most of the film centers around efforts by Black Lives Matter organizers to teach Black teenagers gun safety (via the Black Guns Matter program) and community organizing skills. They learn how to organize protest marches, send out media releases and lobby officials at all levels of government.
While Black Lives Matter has come under criticism for its failure to bring about any genuine policy changes, their community education efforts seem to offer Black teenagers good male role models, as well as an attractive alternative to drug dealing and gang banging.