Sarah Mondale: Why I Had to Make a Film About the Importance of Public Schools

Diane Ravitch's blog

Sarah Mondale directed a wonderful new film called BACKPACK FULL OF CASH, narrated by Matt Damon.

Ten years ago, Sarah and her partners Sarah Patton and Vera Aronow made a four-part series called SCHOOL, a history of the American public school; it was shown on PBS and won rave reviews.

Why did the team reassemble now to tell a new story about our public schools?

Sarah Mondale explains in her post why she cares so passionately about public schools.

She writes:

“My dad, Pete Mondale, was a lifelong teacher who spent most of his career as a professor of American Studies. His mother was a music teacher who taught for a while in a one-room schoolhouse. He went to public schools in the tiny farming town of Elmore, Minnesota, and thanks to the government-funded GI Bill, he was able to go to college. He later earned his doctorate at the…

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