7 pm in Piedmont; 3/24 @ 12:30 pm in Oakland at The New Parkway, 474 24th St between Telegraph and Broadway
"I was in prison before I was even born." So begins the story of Dr. Victor Rios who, by age 15, was a high school dropout and gang member with three felony convictions and a death wish. When a teacher's quiet persistence, a mentor's moral conviction, and his best friend's murder converge, Rios' path takes an unexpected turn. "THE PUSHOUTS" documents the inspirational story of Oakland native Victor Rios, now a UC professor, who trains educators to help students who are at risk of being 'pushed out' of the school system.
The film's verite footage begins in 2013 after Rios accepts a challenge from his high school mentor Martin Flores, a UC student and La Raza organizer, to lead an intensive six week program for youth in south central LA. Flores promised no funding and "I want you to bring a team of super mentors". After some soul searching, Rios agreed and his life changed.
Referred to as 'dropouts' in national statistics, many of these youth are actually 'pushouts' trying to stay enrolled against the odds. THE PUSHOUTS tells the story of the one-in-three Latino and Black students nationally who do not graduate, are pushed into continuation schools, low paying jobs, and, too often, the criminal justice and mass incarceration systems.