Why You Should Buy Into “The Lottery”

Michael Wille /

The Lottery, a new documentary about charter schools in New York City, is changing the debate on parental choice in education.  Madeleine Sackler, a 27 year old graduate of Duke University and creator of the film, follows 4 students who have been entered into a lottery to be selected for one of the spots at Harlem Success Academy (a transformative system of charter schools that is catching the eyes of policymakers across the country.) The film will be screened today at 5:30 at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. Details below the jump.

In addition to the four students and their families, the filmmaker interviews local council members, a writer for New York Magazine, Newark, NJ mayor Cory Booker, and many others for their perspectives on why charter schools are an important part of the school choice landscape. Mayor Booker notes that he can’t even attend the lotteries anymore in his city because they break his heart watching the hundreds of applicants who aren’t selected.  Officials from the local chapter of the United Federation of Teachers as well as the National Education Association were invited to present their views. However, they declined. (more…)