In TIME FOR SCHOOL, WIDE ANGLE continues its 12-year commitment to document the global education crisis through profiles of seven children in seven countries. All of the children are struggling to overcome daunting obstacles such as poverty, disease and the aftermath of war to achieve what is not yet a global birthright: a basic education. The program follows the progress of all the children, their peers and families, every three years through 2015, the year they should graduate from high school: also the United Nations' target date for achieving universal education.
In 2003, WIDE ANGLE filmed children in their first year of school in Afghanistan, Benin, Brazil, India, Japan, Kenya and Romania. In 2006, the program returned to film an update and found that some of the children were hanging onto their enrollment by a thread. The third installment in 2009 finds the children at a critical point in their education -- the transition to middle school -- a time when new school fees and pressures to join the work force drive many children from impoverished families out of school. Will we find Nanavi, our student in Benin, in school or working the fields with her mother to help feed the family? Will Joab in Nairobi and Jefferson in Rio de Janeiro still be at the top of their classes? Did Joab's school survive Kenya's shocking post-election violence? With over 100 million children around the globe not in school, TIME FOR SCHOOL puts a human face on an issue with profound consequences for global development.
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