On October 11 from 4 to 8 pm in New York City, “Black Girl Takeover Weekend” kicks off with a screening of PUSHOUT: The Criminalization of Black Girls in Schools at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. The screening is a part of: a summit for girls and their advocates – a special program for girls and educators on the occasion of the International Day of the Girl, which is on October 11th.
“Black and Brown girls continue to disproportionately experience harsh and exclusionary school discipline for incidents and behaviors that do not pose a critical threat to the safety of the learning environment. Many of these behaviors are fueled by experiences with trauma, much of which is under-reported for girls of color,” said Dr. Monique W. Morris, executive producer and co-writer for the PUSHOUT documentary. “This weekend in NYC is to acknowledge the critical role of arts education in response to trauma and to amplify the tremendous work that has been done to advocate for learning conditions that girls want and deserve.”
During the Summit, in addition to the screening of the film, there will be discussions and breakout sessions. These sessions will consist of high school-aged youth reflecting on the film through art making and writing. The summit was created by The Met in collaboration with Dr. Morris and Denise Pines, one of the executive producers of PUSHOUT and co-owner of Women in the Room Productions.
“Fostering the conditions for young people to share their critical thoughts about their experiences through art is absolutely vital and essential to how we support youth voices at The Met. We are so excited to partner with Dr. Morris, Girls for Gender Equity, the NYC Department of Education, Brotherhood-Sister Sol, Everyblackgirl, and S.O.U.L.Sisters on Liberation: A Summit for Girls and their Advocates,” said Sandra Jackson-Dumont, the Museum’s Frederick P. and Sandra P. Rose Chairman of Education.
This feature-length documentary based upon Dr. Morris’ books, PUSHOUT: The Criminalization of Black Girls in Schools (The New Press, 2018) and Sing a Rhythm, Dance a Blues (The New Press, 2019) exposes a new and alarming trend: African American girls are the fastest-growing population in the juvenile justice system and the only group of girls disproportionately experiencing harsh discipline at every educational level. The film also explores critical interventions that interrupt criminalization in schools.