Director Vicki Abeles turns the personal political, igniting a national conversation in her new documentary about the pressures faced by American schoolchildren and their teachers in a system and culture obsessed with the illusion of achievement, competition and the pressure to perform. Featuring the heartbreaking stories of young people across the country who have been pushed to the brink, educators who are burned out and worried that students aren’t developing the skills they need, and parents who are trying to do what’s best for their kids, Race to Nowhere points to the silent epidemic in our schools: cheating has become commonplace, students have become disengaged, stress-related illness, depression and burnout are rampant, and young people arrive at college and the workplace unprepared and uninspired.
Race to Nowhere is a call to mobilize families, educators, and policy makers to challenge current assumptions on how to best prepare the youth of America to become healthy, bright, contributing and leading citizens.
Producer and Co-Director
As Founder of Reel Link Films, Vicki Abeles intends to bring to center stage critical issues impacting children, women and families. Race to Nowhere is her first feature documentary. Since its premier at the Mill Valley Film festival, the film has screened to tens of thousands of parents, educators and concerned citizens. Abeles is on the cutting edge of independent film distribution having developed a hybrid distribution model of showing the film in theaters as well as local community venues with a related social action campaign. Abeles is continuing to produce short films on topics related to those raised in Race to Nowhere while also consulting on other films and in the early stages of development on her next documentary. Previously, Ms. Abeles worked as a corporate attorney on Wall Street and on the business side at Goldman Sachs. She lives in the Bay area with her husband and three children and is a passionate advocate for women and children. Abeles also facilitates the parents group on Edutopia, part of the George Lucas Educational Foundation.
Co-sponsored with the Munroe Center for Social Inquiry at Pitzer College