WESTFIELD, NJ – The Westfield Education Fund, which aims to be a driver for innovation in the Westfield Public Schools, will host a screening of the documentary “Most Likely to Succeed,” on Wednesday, Feb. 27.

The film highlights an innovative school in California where students are engaged in meaningful project-based learning and are developing skills essential for success in the 21st century such as critical thinking, problem-solving, collaboration and communication.

It also raises questions about the purpose of education and may challenge assumptions that some parents hold about what is most important in education.

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It is directed by documentarian Greg Whiteley and has been an official selection of two-dozen of the world’s top film festivals, including Sundance, Tribeca and AFI DOCS.

View the trailer here.

The film was developed to stimulate community discussion about education, and Westfield Education Fund hopes that this event sparks dialogue about the purpose of school and how our community can be a leader in innovative learning approaches.

A goal of the event is to give the audience new ideas about what meaningful and engaging student learning can look like and to cultivate an interest in bringing more of these opportunities to the children in our community.

Hopefully, educators who attend the event will also feel inspired to experiment with new instructional practices in their classrooms.

After the screening, a panel discussion featuring some of Westfield's innovative educators will be moderated by Mayor Shelley Brindle. 

Panelists include Edison Intermediate School Principal Matt Bolton, Westfield High School Engineering and Design Teacher Laura Doyle, first-grade Tamaques School teacher Mary Montes and Brian Baldwin, a professor of Science Education at the Center for Science, Technology, and Mathematics at Kean University.

Panelists will reflect on the film, share innovative practices and programs being implemented in their schools, and discuss what ideas from the film have relevance for Westfield.

The documentary screening and panel will take place at Edison Intermediate School, 800 Rahway Ave., at 7:30 p.m. Doors will open at 7 p.m.

Tickets are $10 and can be purchased at here on the Westfield Fund website. The Westfield Education Fund would like to acknowledge the generous contributions of its sponsors, including the JCC of Central New Jersey and RBC Wealth Management, which have made this event possible.

About Westfield Education Fund (WEF)

Through this event, WEF hopes to raise awareness about the organization and invigorate the community around its purpose. WEF is run by a Board of Directors comprised of Westfield parent volunteers and was established in 1991 by community members, in partnership with the school district and Board of Education. It supports innovative projects that strengthen and enrich students’ academic experience but fall beyond the school district budget. Most of the district’s budget is allocated to critical ‘fixed’ costs such as salaries, transportation, supplies and maintenance. Discretionary spending is limited and little remains to support innovation.  Westfield Education Fund fills this critical gap.