This documentary tells the story of how a partnership of youth and adults helped their community overcome its 21st century racism. The film opens with a racial incident in January 2003 and the community’s initial response. It continues to trace the community over the next seven years: how tension in the community rose, how a group of young people began to speak out and have the hard discussions about race that adults were putting off, and how an innovative youth-adult partnership helped the community break out of its denial and solve its problems.
The film incorporates historical documents, archival footage and evaluation data. Interviewees include students, parents, teachers, administrators, police officers and elected officials. The story of social change is told in residents’ own words and is bigger than any one person. By tethering abstract themes around a concrete storyline, the film offers an abundance of historical documentation for scholars to analyze; educators, youth, youth workers and community activists to learn from; and every viewer to be inspired by. Those who have seen the film have called it “phenomenal,” “groundbreaking,” and something “every student should see.”
Where you can watch the film
We made this film to document our community’s struggle, not to make a profit. We hope others can learn from it, so we are offering it free of charge.You have four options:
- Watch the film in its entirety on YouTube.
- Watch the film on your local community television network station, or request the station to air it.
- Set up a screening at your school or organization. Contact us for details.
- For those who will be using the film in an educational setting and can afford it, we ask you to purchase a copy from Amazon for $10.
Using the film in a classroom or with a group
The film has a 72 minute run time but is divided into 3 sections, making it ideal to be watched and discussed in a classroom over three class periods. The film presents some strong language and situations, so viewer discretion is advised. We have prepared the following documents to aid classroom screenings.
- A student activity handout with 12 follow-along study guide questions [doc]
- A student activity handout with 12 deeper discussion-reflection questions [doc]
- A 2-page handout with information about hate crimes and a chronology of the hate crimes that happened in Davis from 2002-2007 [pdf]
- A 1-page teacher guide that outlines the primary teaching points of the film [doc]
- A classroom writing lesson about telling your community’s story (grades 7-12) [pdf]
- A classroom lesson plan about using theater/drama for social justice and promoting student voices [pdf]
- A list of questions for a classroom or general group discussion
In addition, we created a 4-class mini unit that could be added as an addendum or supplement to traditional units, such as a study of the novel To Kill a Mockingbird. The sequence focuses on three points: how race and racism still affect society today, how white privilege is the other side of racism, and how colorblindness is not an appropriate response to 21st century racism.
- Unit Overview [doc]
- Unit Resources with articles, notetakers, PowerPoints, and other materials [zip]
You can also download the students’ research findings.
Title: From the Community to the Classroom
Subtitle: A youth-directed documentary of how Davis young people led their community closer toward educational equity.
Director: Cliff Garibay
Assistant Director: Ryan Gonzales
Executive Producer: Jann Murray-Garcia, M.D., M.P.H.
Producer: Daniel Tkach
Interviewer: Andrew Bruch
Run Time: 72 minutes
The film has been screened at dozens of events, including:
- Local schools (Holmes Junior High School, Emerson, Harper, Davis Senior High School)
- University of California, Davis
- California State University Sacramento
- Sacramento City College
- California State Legislature
- Yolo County Office of Education
- Capital Region Equity Summit
- Davis Film Festival
- Whitesands Film Festival
Contact us if you would like to set up screening at your school or community.
We relied on the generous support of Davis Media Access, a nonprofit community media center that offered technical training and equipment. We received partial funding from grants from Teaching Tolerance of the Southern Poverty Law Center and from the Sierra Health Foundation, and paid for the rest out of the film’s development out of pocket.← Back