‘Personal Statement’ documentary draws attention to student guidance gap

Aug 26, 2018 by

A documentary that seeks to spark conversations about the inaccessible nature of the college application process headlined Thursday’s opening night of the Middlebury New Filmmakers Festival.

“Personal Statement” shows the real-life impact of the lack of guidance counselors in high schools around the country. The nationwide average: one for every 491 students. In other words, 241 more students than the American School Counselor Association recommends. To combat the guidance gap, many schools have turned to peer college counselors, determined high school students who are applying to college themselves.

“Personal Statement,” a reference to the autobiographical essay prospective students submit to colleges, follows three Brooklyn high school students as they undertake that very mission, all while figuring out how to tell their own stories:

Karoline Jiménez’s personal statement began with a question: “How do you endure harassment at school when you are awoken at night by a shouting, drunk dad?”

“I grew up in a family where girls are given less freedom than boys,” Christine Rodríguez wrote.

Source: ‘Personal Statement’ documentary draws attention to student guidance gap

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