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From the team that brought you Race to Nowhere, a new film about transforming our education system from the ground up.
From the team that brought you Race to Nowhere, a new film about transforming our education system from the ground up.
751 backers pledged $90,538 to help bring this project to life.

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$90,538

751

UPDATE:

We’ve reached our initial funding goal in 10 days! Inspired by the overwhelming response, we are setting a new goal for this project: to expand our current reach to 1,500 backers.

Even by contributing as little as $10, your friends and colleagues can still help us grow our Kickstarter community to 1,500. That means 1,500 additional people committed to transforming our schools from the ground up.

WHY THIS FILM MATTERS:

Every day we hear stories about the troubles in American education: our test scores are stagnant, we’re falling behind our international peers, and our schools are failing to prepare future generations to succeed in the 21st century. For the last decade, this story - and the fear it inspires - has shaped the way we talk about our education system and informed our national education policies.

More pressure. More assessments. More of the same.

But what if the efforts we’ve been pushing so hard in our schools are actually the things that are leaving our education system worse off? What if the initiatives that narrow, standardize and pressure our school environments, are the reasons our children are less engaged in school and less prepared to be thoughtful, capable, contributing adults?

In Beyond Measure, we set out to challenge the assumptions of our current education story.

Rather than ask why our students fail to measure up, this film asks us all to reconsider the greater purpose of education. What if our education system valued personal growth over test scores? Put inquiry over mimicry? Encouraged passion over rankings? What if we decided that the purpose of school was not the transmission of facts or formulas, but the transformation of every student? And what if this paradigm-shift was driven by students, parents, and educators, not politicians and policymakers?

In Beyond Measure, we went in search of those answers and found a revolution brewing in public schools across the country. From rural Kentucky to New York City, we share the stories of schools that are breaking away from our outmoded, test-driven education culture and pioneering a new vision for our classrooms. These are schools that are asking our students to invent, to make, to think beyond their school walls, and to imagine how they can effect change in the world. These are schools that are transforming the roles of students and teachers, and putting more faith in the ingenuity of our children. These are schools that see critical thinking, communication, collaboration, and creativity as the bedrock of a good education and the key to success after graduation. And these are schools that are dramatically improving outcomes for children of all backgrounds; schools where practically every student graduates and goes on to finish college.

Beyond Measure fills a void that too many other education stories have left empty - a positive picture of what’s innovative and possible in American education when communities decide they are ready for change.

A GRASSROOTS MOVEMENT

With Beyond Measure, we want to give you more than a worthwhile film-watching experience. This is about igniting a grassroots movement to transform our education system from the ground up!

We’ve already laid the groundwork. Our first film Race to Nowhere has played in over 7,000 community-based screenings, aired on national television, been viewed by millions of people, and inspired thousands of students, parents, and educators to make changes at home and at school. Building on this momentum, we plan to develop action tool kits, social action campaigns, and a website to help communities use Beyond Measure as a platform for change. But we can’t get to this stage without your support to finish the film!

WHAT WE NEED TO MAKE THIS HAPPEN:

Our goal is to produce a film that is as exceptional as the amazing students and educators who inspired our story. Now that we are in the final stretch of post-production, we are raising funds to make this film as visually and emotionally compelling as it can be.

We’re taking on fundraising efforts in many ways, including reaching out to foundations and our closest supporters. But we’ll need an extra push to get us to the finish line. With your help, our goal is to raise an additional $50,000 over the next 30 days.

Thanks to the support of our incredible network, we’ve reached our initial funding goal in less than 10 days! Inspired by the overwhelming response, we are setting a new goal for this project: to expand our current reach to 1,500 backers. This time, we’re not looking to hit a specific price point; we’re hoping to engage more communities.

With additional support, we’ll go beyond our first-tier goals to reach even higher! Specifically, we’ll be able to create additional short films featuring each of the schools where we filmed, and to create a comprehensive suite of facilitation guides to inspire communities to use Beyond Measure as a platform for on-the-ground change.

Your contribution will help us:

  • Complete the final edit, with Academy Award-winning editor Jeffrey Friedman.

  • Compose an original score, with Emmy Award-winning composer Mark Adler.

  • Create professional motion graphics and animation to augment the film’s verité scenes and expert interviews.

  • Complete color correction, sound mixing, and mastering for theatrical screenings, broadcast, and DVD.

  • Translation and closed captioning.

OUR TEAM

Director Vicki Abeles - Filmmaker, parent, attorney and passionate education advocate. She directed the award winning documentary Race to Nowhere and brought the film to millions of viewers around the globe using a cutting-edge community distribution model.  She is the author of a forthcoming book on education change makers to be published by Simon & Schuster later this year. Additional film credits include Associate Producer on the Sundance favorite Miss Representation (2011) and Associate Producer on Plastic Man: The Artful Life of Jerry Ross Barrish (2014).

Editor Jeffrey Friedman - Academy Award-winning filmmaker. His editing credits include a number of award-winning films and television documentaries including Never Cry Wolf and Kings Point. In 1987, Jeffrey and Rob Epstein formed Telling Pictures and began working as a filmmaking team, producing and directing a wide range of award-winning films, including Common Threads: Stories From the Quilt (Academy Award, Documentary Feature, 1989), The Celluloid Closet (Emmy Award for Directing, 1995), HOWL (2010) and Lovelace (2013).

Executive Producer Lynda Weinman – Entrepreneur, author, philanthropist. She is the co-founder and executive chair of lynda.com, one of the most successful companies in online education today. Before launching lynda.com, she was a faculty member at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California, and worked as an animator and motion graphics director in the special effects film industry. She is an education advocate, deeply committed to helping schools better prepare students for the future.

Composer Mark Adler - Emmy Award-winning composer. He previously worked with Vicki Abeles on her film, Race to Nowhere. He has scored numerous National Geographic specials, four Hallmark Hall of Fame TV movies, and four Oscar-nominated feature documentaries, most recently Food, Inc. for Robert Kenner. He’s been a regular at the Sundance Film Festival, having scored almost a dozen films that debuted there. These include the Audience Award-winning Miramax film Picture Bride, the soundtrack of which was released by Virgin Records, with the film’s main title featured in the compilation, "Miramax Films Greatest Hits." He also won an Emmy for music direction on HBO's The Rat Pack and garnered another nomination for Hallmark Entertainment’s Forbidden Territory: Stanley’s Search For Livingstone.

Mark Smith, Director of Photography - His work has spanned documentary, television comedy, commercials and indie features. Assignments have taken him to Africa, the South Pacific, Asia and the Caribbean on documentary projects for Discovery, independent producers and other broadcast programs. Camera credits include Returning Mickey Stern, Grand Prize winner Rome Film Festival, Worlds of Sound, Cine Golden Eagle winner for the Smithsonian Channel, Finding Amelia, for Discovery, which he also co-produced. Mark previously collaborated with Vicki Abeles on Race To Nowhere. As a parent and founding member of a community based school, he developed an interest in education, which informed his participation in Beyond Measure.

THOUGHT PARTNERS:

In producing Beyond Measure, we have interviewed internationally known leading experts in education, child development, creativity, motivation, and academic equity. Here are some of the individuals whose research and extensive experience has inspired and informed our film:

Sir Ken Robinson PhD - Author of multiple books, including Finding Your Element, Robinson is an internationally recognized thought leader in creativity, education, and innovation. His TED talk “How Schools Kill Creativity” is one of the most watched in TED’s history.

Daniel Pink - Author of the New York Times best-selling books Drive and A Whole New Mind, Pink was named by Thinkers 50 as one of the top 15 best business thinkers in the world. He was a speechwriter for former Vice President Al Gore and an aide to former US Labor Secretary Robert Reich.

Linda Darling-Hammond PhD - Author of The Flat World and Education: How America's Commitment to Equity Will Determine Our Future, Darling-Hammond is an education professor at Stanford University. She is an original founder of the Stanford Center for Opportunity Policy in Education. During 2008 she served as the education advisor for President Barack Obama’s presidential campaign.

Alison Gopnik PhD - Authored several books, including The Scientist in the Crib, Gopnik is an internationally renowned expert in child psychology and development. She is currently a professor of psychology at the University of California at Berkeley.

Yong Zhao PhD - Author of over 20 books, including World Class Learners: Educating Creative and Entrepreneurial Students, Zhao is an internationally known scholar and education expert. In 2012 he was named as one of the 10 most influential people in educational technology by Tech and Learn magazine. He is currently an education professor at the University of Oregon. 

Carol Dweck PhD - Author of Mindset, Dweck is one of the world’s leading experts on the development of student mindsets and the psychology of self conception. She is the founder of Mindset Works and a professor at Stanford University in social and developmental psychology.

Keep Updated

Visit www.beyondmeasurefilm.com to sign up for regular updates on the film. We’ll send you more information about ways you can be involved with the movement to transform education from the ground up.

Is my donation tax deductible?

Yes! Our fiscal sponsor, Filmmaker's Collaborative, is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit. That means you can deduct your contribution minus the value of your pledge gift. Want a full deduction? Simply opt out of the pledge gift and claim the full amount.  We’ll send you the relevant tax ID # and estimated value of your pledge gift with your thank you note!

Risks and challenges

We have a top-notch post-production team in place. Everyone is committed to finishing this project. However, like most independent films, financing can be the final hurdle to completion. The good news is that we’ve already done most of the heavy lifting. We just need your help with one final push.

We are eager to bring you the inspiring stories of some of the countries most innovative schools. We are excited to keep you updated on our progress, respond to any questions, and publicly acknowledge your support! Thank you for helping us drive a fresh education conversation in this country.

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    You and a guest will receive an invitation to a screening with the filmmakers in New York City or the Bay Area (travel not included). We’ll also give you the opportunity to submit a 1-minute video on innovation in your school community to be included on our new website. Plus, everything above!

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    We’ll include your name in a shared “Made Possible By” title card in the film’s closing credits. You will also be invited to a lunch hosted by the filmmakers in San Francisco (travel not included). Plus, everything above!

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    We’ll invite you to be one of the first 100 communities in the country to screen Beyond Measure. Plus, everything above!

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    We’ll organize a 30 minute Skype call with Director Vicki Abeles following your community screening of Beyond Measure. Plus, everything above!

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    Director Vicki Abeles will travel to your community screening to host a Q&A (limited to US travel). And we’ll honor you individually in a single title card in the film’s end credits. Plus, everything above!

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    For being such a major supporter, we’ll give you our undying gratitude and an Associate Producer credit at the end of the film. Plus, everything above!

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Funding period

- (30 days)