Boulder Creek filmmaker Bob Gliner has completed a new documentary titled “Schools That Change Communities” that tells the stories of students in five states who venture outside school walls to impact their community in a positive way.
“Education is at a critical juncture,” Gliner said. “It’s at a place where we can make a difference and solve a lot of problems in American society.”
For his latest film — his third in a row about education — Gliner visited schools in Massachusetts, Maryland, South Dakota, Oregon and California.
In Maryland, students and teachers at an elementary school got involved in cleaning up a polluted site, taking water quality samples and solving a public health problem.
He also visited Watsonville High School’s Video Academy, which used Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s New Deal as a framework for a New Deal in Watsonville, a place where there is 25 percent unemployment and only 50 percent of residents hold high school degrees.
The impact of getting outside the classroom and tackling real-world issues produced immediate results, Gliner said.
“Students become more motivated to learn,” he said. “They get motivated to learn all the other things, and not just separate disciplines, but as part of their lives.”
The TV documentary airs on KQED Plus.
Gliner, a former San Jose State University professor, has lived in Boulder Creek for 40 years and made documentaries in 35 countries.
His most recent education-focused documentaries include “Lessons from the Real World” and “Democracy Left Behind,” both which have been aired on PBS stations across the country.
At a glance
WHAT: “Schools That Change Communities”
WHEN: 1 a.m. Friday, Jan. 4; 3 p.m. Jan. 5; 11 p.m. Jan. 8; and 5 a.m. Jan. 9
WHERE: Channel KQED Plus