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GCC to show film  exploring racial differences in  private school settings

GREENFIELD — As part of Black History Month, Greenfield Community College will screen a documentary Thursday that examines the effect that racial differences in private high schools sometimes have on black students.

“The Prep School Negro,” directed by Pennsylvania native Andre Robert Lee, will be shown in Stinchfield Lecture Hall at 2 p.m. Lee will answer questions after the film.

“It will provide a great opportunity to talk about the intersections of race, class and education and we are excited to have Andre lead us through those conversations,” said Shannon Coskran, a GCC academic coordinator.

The documentary recounts Lee’s experience as a black student enrolled at the Germantown Friends School on a full academic scholarship. The director then interviews current students at private schools to see what things are like today.

On the movie’s website, www.theprepschoolnegro.org, Lee wrote that he often felt guilty for being able to access education when his family and neighbors could not.

“As I reflect back, I can see more clearly the internal struggles I faced as an adolescent and as a young adult,” he wrote. “This documentary will tell my story and the story of other prep school Negroes like me.”

The documentary is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served.

The school’s celebration of Black History Month will continue with a panel discussion at noon on Feb. 20. Black students, faculty and staff will speak at lunchtime about their experiences, as a part of the monthly “In Our Own Voice” series.

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