Maggie Gyllenhaal and Viola Davis Star in Won’t Back Down Movie About Failing Schools

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Regular readers of Connect with your Teens know that I have many issues with our antiquated educational system. That is why I jumped at the chance to attend an early screening of “Won’t Back Down”, a new movie starring Maggie Gyllenhaal and Viola Davis about two mothers who try to transform a failing inner city school. Won’t Back Down opens September 28, 2012 and I highly recommend this movie for everyone.

From the Won’t Back Down website:

WON’T BACK DOWN takes a raw and unflinching look at the current state of our country’s education system, and provides an optimistic and actionable point of view for parents, teachers, and community activists alike. 

A fictional story inspired by actual events, the film chronicles the journey of two women, a struggling mother played by Maggie Gyllenhaal, and a veteran teacher played by Viola Davis, who embark on a mission to turn around their kids’ failing school. 

Won’t Back Down hits the nail on the head about two of the biggest reasons our educational system is failing – the aversion to change and tenure. I’ve already written about aversion to change in education in discussing Seth Godin’s education manifesto, Stop Stealing Dreams.

The discussions of tenure in Won’t Back Down, to me, were something that everyone needs to hear. Very few people have job safety in this world. Good teachers will not have to worry about their jobs. However, bad teachers will not get to stay on and ruin students’ lives. Yes, a bad teacher, especially a bully or one that completely doesn’t care anymore, will not only hinder a child’s education, but can devastate them for life.

In addition to Maggie Gyllenhaal and Viola Davis, the movie also stars Holly Hunter and Rosie Perez. Gyllenhaal, Davis and Perez spoke after the screening and they are all passionate about this cause. If you are too, please follow the Won’t Back Down Facebook page and check out how you can help on the Won’t Back Down website.

Please watch the trailer for Won’t Back Down:

A big thank you to The Moms, One2One Network, Ladies Home Journal and Twentieth Century Fox for holding this amazingly entertaining and educational event. Please go see Won’t Back Down when it is released on September 28, 2012 and help spread the word. And if I didn’t already mention this, in addition to the message, Won’t Back Down is a fabulous movie and there wasn’t a dry eye in the house by the end of it.

See also: 
Steel Magnolias: All Star Cast in Lifetime Original Movie
Best Interests of the Students

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  1. This movie is not based on true events and the parent trigger law has never been successfully implemented. There’s tremendous corporate money out there pushing for charters right now, which is why it was made, by the same people who made “Waiting for Superman.”

    • Sorry to see you taken in by a clear propaganda effort. Nothing personal, Jennifer, but you could not be more wrong about all of this.

      First of all, what teachers would “benefit” by this film except for the phonies chosen by Wal-Mart, the sponsors of this awful, Big Lie?

      This film and its very name are absolutely Orwellian; and I don’t mean that in a “good way”.
      Reality is upside-down in this awful “Won’t Back Down” film; day is night, cold is hot, lies are truth. It’s incredible.

      In this film, the private, for-profit “education” businesses that want to “phase out” our public schools, and replace them with “charters and vouchers” are the “good guys”. Those who stand up to them have been portrayed as the Bad Guys.

      Reminds me of “Birth of a Nation”. Truly it does.

      When did it become okay to speak about our teachers as if they were convicts? It’s sick. It’s disgusting. It’s as bad as anti-Semitism or racism. It really is.

      Why is hating someone because of their profession any different than doing so because of ethnicity, or religion or race?

      This is a vile propaganda effort that encourages people to hate and attack our educators. Shame on those who took part in it.

      It’s disgusting.

  2. I am so excited for this movie and the issues it brings up. When will people realize that it is imperative that they act as advocates for their children to receive the best education possible?

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