Independent Lens: East of Salinas

East of Salinas takes us to the heart of California’s “Steinbeck Country,” the Salinas Valley, to meet a bright boy and his dedicated teacher — both sons of migrant farm workers. With parents who are busy working long hours in the fields, third grader Jose Ansaldo often turns to his teacher, Oscar Ramos, for guidance. But Jose is undocumented; he was born in Mexico,. Like many other migrant children, he is beginning to understand the situation— and the opportunities that may be lost to him through no fault of his own. East of Salinas follows Jose and Oscar over three years: the boy is full of energy, smarts, and potential, while his teacher is determined to give back to a new generation of migrant children.

Testing, Opting-Out and Parental Engagement

The Connect New York series explores statewide issues of critical importance with monthly, one-hour panel discussions about education issues including: Common Core standards, teacher evaluation, school financing, achievement gaps, testing and opting out, and legal challenges. This episode focuses on testing, opting out and parental engagement in New York’s schools. We visit a school in the Elmira Heights School District and speak with its superintendent as well as teachers and parents. The program will focus on the response by the families of 240,000 New York students who opted out of the state administered exams in 2015 and the recently announced changes by the state and federal education departments. Susan Arbetter, host of “The Capitol Pressroom” serves as show host, and moderates a panel conversation with NYS Education Commissioner MaryEllen Elia.

Program Places Lens on a Typical Day in a U.S. Public School

Go Public: A Day in the Life of an American School District documents a single day in an urban public school district, from sun up to long after sundown. On May 8, 2012, 50 directors and their small camera crews followed 50 individuals who attend, support and work in the Pasadena Unified School District, a racially and economically diverse district with 28 public school campuses. Administrators, teachers, students, support staff and volunteers lead us on journeys that reveal their unique contributions in making a public school district function. No voice-over narratives or expert commentaries, just an authentic window into the world of public education. Go Public gives audiences a chance to see and hear the people actually living the public school experience.