Colorado Springs Independent

Paper Tigers screening offers an intimate look at schools addressing unhealthy and destructive behaviors

Alissa Smith Aug 16, 2018 1:00 AM
Paper Tigers, Aug. 16, 5:30-8 p.m., InfoZone Theater at Rawlings Public Library, 100 E. Abriendo Ave., Pueblo, free, RSVP requested,
Kids and teens face more challenges than many adults realize, and some youths start life by pushing a rock uphill, facing childhood issues that change the course of the rest of their lives. Lincoln Alternative High School in Walla Walla, Washington (a last-chance school for kids on the verge of dropping out), has increased graduation rates fivefold and dramatically reduced student fights, simply by addressing the traumas and personal/family issues that often drive kids toward unhealthy and destructive behaviors. Science teacher Erik Gordon says: “The behavior isn’t the kid. The behavior is a symptom of what’s going on in their life.” This intimate documentary follows five troubled teens at Lincoln Alternative, and provides an inside look at the methods used by teachers and staff to ensure that they address problems like addiction, violence and depression in a sustainable, healthy way. Afterward, stick around for an eye-opening panel discussion about the film and our own educational communities.