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Noted documentarians Alan and Susan Raymond spent one year at Stanton Elementary School in urban Philadelphia creating a surprising document of lost dreams and hopes in their 1993 film I Am a Promise: The Children of Stanton Elementary School. Exclusively African-American and mostly filled with children from impoverished homes, the school's staff and administration have spent much time trying to create a solid place of learning and hope for its children. A new opportunity is presented when dynamic Caucasian principal Deanna Burney takes over the school and sets about changing the atmosphere of the school.
Over the course of the year, though, Burney's efforts are not enough to offset the greater community's malcontent and pervasive lawlessness, forcing the idealistic principal to make some difficult choices about her position in the school district. I Am a Promise: The Children of Stanton Elementary School was one of the most awarded documentary films in 1993, with an Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature and an Emmy award for Outstanding Information Special among its numerous citations. --Ryan Shriver, Rovi. New Video Group (2005), English, DVD Number of discs: 1, Rated: NR (Not Rated), Run Time: 90 minutes.