September 29, 2016
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Join American Documentary, Inc. and ITVS for an online screening and live chat of CLASS OF ‘27, which premiered as part public television premiere from Emmy-nominated series AMERICA REFRAMED.

Video Descriptions

Class of 27' Intro

Get to Know ITVS | July 2016

Class of '27 (Spanish Captions)

In rural America, children face the prospect of a compromised future. Class of '27 focuses on early childhood education in struggling communities, highlighting the efforts of people guiding children toward graduating high school in '27. United by hope, inspiration and resiliency, the film shows that children are most likely to grow into productive adults if they receive support in the early years.

2 hr minutes


  • America ReFramed

    America ReFramed films present personal viewpoints and a range of voices on the nation’s social issues – giving audiences the opportunity to learn from the past, understand the present, and explore new frameworks for America’s future. With weekly 60- to 90-minute independent films, followed by provocative conversations led by host/moderator Natasha Del Toro, this weekly series offers an unfiltered look at people rarely given a voice on national television.

  • Danielle Orange

  • Kristy


  • Laurel Wyckoff

    Education & Outreach Manager

  • Ian Esquibel Executive Director, Learning Alliance

    Born and raised in New Mexico, Ian has a vested interest in the health and well-being of local communities. He brings experience from working in early childhood education as a Head Start teacher and as an administrator of a large nonprofit focused on early childhood development.

  • Chris Jonas Co-founder, Executive Director, and Team Member, Littleglobe

    Chris Jonas is a New Mexico based composer, filmmaker, intermedia/video artist and creative facilitator. With his non-profit, Littleglobe, he has produced two feature education documentaries aired nationally including the American Graduate feature “Our Time is Now.”

  • Christine McClellan, Community Engagement Coordinator, Prairie Public Broadcasting

    Christine McClellan is the community engagement coordinator at Prairie Public Broadcasting, a PBS and NPR member station based in Fargo, ND. After interning and volunteering at Prairie Public while attending college, she was happy to have the opportunity to move on to work for Prairie Public to better connect with their audience and reach out to communities across North Dakota and Minnesota.

  • Michael Gallo, Ph.D. Assistant Professor of Early Childhood Education, University of North Dakota

    Michael Gallo is an assistant professor in the early childhood program area of the Department of Teaching and Learning. Over the past 30 years, he has worked in the field of early childhood education as a teacher, consultant and trainer. He teaches courses in early language development, intro to early childhood education, play and development, and curriculum development.

  • Natali Carrera Director, Educational Services & Grants, ValleyPBS

    Natali Carrera has worked in the field of education for 18 years, with her work focusing primarily on providing academic and family support to underserved populations. Having grown up in an isolated, rural area herself, and with most of her friends being part of migratory farm laboring families, Carrera is thrilled to support and help amplify the Fields of Promise story in her role as Education Director at ValleyPBS in Fresno, CA.

  • Cleofas Rodriguez, Jr. Executive Director, National Migrant & Seasonal Head Start Association

    Cleo Rodriguez, Jr. is the Executive Director of the National Migrant & Seasonal Head Start Association. Cleo has formerly served as the Executive Director of the Texas Head Start Association in Austin, Texas area. Cleo is trained in the Center on Social Emotional Foundations for Early Learning in both the Pre-School and Infants/Toddler Modules. Cleo has also worked closely with the Devereux Early Childhood Initiatives, including, Devereux Early Childhood Assessment, Challenging Behaviors, Children's Social Emotional Health and FLIP IT.

  • Nina Alvarez, Producer, Fields of Promise

    Nina Alvarez (Class of ’27) is an award-winning television journalist, producer, and filmmaker, working internationally in widely varied venues. Her feature-length documentary on NYC prostitution, Very Young Girls, premiered at the Toronto Film Festival, and aired on Showtime, and she served as field producer on the Oscar-nominated and Emmy Award-winning film Which Way Home. Nina has covered the war in Iraq and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict for NBC News, and made documentaries for MSNBC, Univision, Discovery Channel, and MTV News and Documentary. She has also worked at World News Tonight, Nightline, Good Morning America, and 20/20. Recently, Nina has produced episodic programming for PBS and CNBC, and founded Zócalo Media, focusing on multimedia storytelling. She is currently producing a Spanish language documentary for Univision, as well as the documentary Albizu, with funds from LPB and ITVS.

  • James Rutenbeck, Executive Producer, Class of ’27

    Rutenbeck's films explore the lives of unemployed coal miners, small farmers and itinerant evangelists. Raise the Dead portrays the lives of preachers practicing a grassroots tradition in the shadow of televangelism. In 2000, the hour-long documentary was the only U.S. film selected for competition at Cinema du Reel and was awarded Best Independent Film at the New England Film Festival. His 1989 film, Losing Ground, also a Cinema du Reel selection, is a psychological portrait of an Iowa family facing the loss of a family farm. His first film, Company Town (1984), is a meditation on the past and present in an Appalachian coal town. Rutenbeck is currently Executive Producer of Class of ’27, a series of three short films about the lives of young children in economically distressed parts of rural America. Class of ’27 was fully funded by the Diversity Fund of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. The films premiered at the Independent Film Festival of Boston in 2016 and will air this September on America ReFramed, a PBS World Channel documentary series.

  • Glenda Vasquez Parent Educator, Ready to Learn Program, ValleyPBS

    Glenda Vasquez experienced the realities of growing up within a family that subsisted on migratory farm work, exactly like the family featured in Fields of Promise. Her own experience so closely mirror the one portrayed in the film, and seeing the story told in such a wide-reaching way for the first time deeply affected her. Glenda now serves as a parent educator, helping parents of all backgrounds, including numbers of migrant workers, to understand the full value of education, and how they can be empowered to step into the role of being their child’s first teacher.

  • Gyasi Ross

    Author of Don't Know Much About Indians and How to Say I Love You in Indian

  • Iris Ventura Galindo, Film Subject,Fields of Promise

    Iris and her family were featured in the Class of ’27 film segment, Fields of Promise. Fields of Promise follows Iris, her younger sister, Mireya, and her parents from Fresno, Calif., to Oregon’s Willamette Valley for berry season. Mireya’s parents, who are migrant workers and speak Spanish and Mixteco at home, face work days as long as 12 hours. They enroll Mireya in Migrant Head Start where bilingual teacher, Aimee Brown, makes it a warm and engaging academic experience that includes meals and outdoor play. Iris, a high school graduate and mother of a two-year-old, is encouraged by her sibling’s success, and plans to go to college and become a lawyer, fighting for farmworkers’ rights

  • Debby Terry, Peer Support Specialist, Kentucky River Community Care, Inc.

    Debby Terry, is a former addict who overcame significant odds to become the first former felon ever hired by Kentucky River Community Care, Inc. (KRCC). She is KRCC’s lead Peer Support Specialist, helping others to claim lives in recovery. She shares her story in Class of ’27.

  • Laurel

  • Anonymous NT2N

  • Anonymous NT2N

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The views and opinions expressed in this online screening are those of the presenters and participants, and do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of ITVS, public broadcasting, or any entities hosting the screening.