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Friday Churn: “Bully” opens in Colo.

What’s churning:

The much-discussed documentary “Bully” opens today in Colorado with a PG-13 rating, making it more widely available and accessible to students, parents, educators and others.

The film follows five families over the course of a school year, including two families who have lost children to suicide and a mother whose teen daughter has been jailed after bringing a gun on her school bus.

Bully has drawn attention both for its subject matter and for the battle over its rating, which started at R until enormous public outcry – and the editing out of a few F-bombs – prompted the Motion Picture Association of America to drop it to a PG-13. You can learn more about the movement sparked by the movie at www.thebullyproject.com.

The documentary has won critical reviews for its look at a problem faced by an estimated 13 million schoolchildren each year. Peter Travers of Rolling Stone magazine gave it 3.5 stars out of 4, calling it “a potent and provocative look at a problem that’s out of control.” Watch the trailer:

Former Colorado education Commissioner Dwight Jones is facing a big fiscal crisis as superintendent of the Clark County, Nev., schools, the nation’s fifth largest district with some 307,000 students.

According to EdWeek’s District Dossier blog, the district faces “worst-case” budget shortfall of about $64 million for the 2012-13 school year, which could mean the loss of up to 1,400 positions. The blog post also some interesting background on a new study about the challenges facing districts nationwide.

The district has more than 37,000 employees and an annual budget of just above $2 billion. You can get more details in this Las Vegas Review-Journal report.

What’s on tap:

Peg Hoey, president of Kunskapsskolan USA, is this month’s speaker in the Hot Lunch series sponsored by the Donnell-Kay Foundation. Kunskapsskolan is an international organization that starts schools with the central idea is personalized learning, where the school and the teachers start from and adapt themselves to the pupil’s goals, ambitions and potentials.

The EdNews’ Churn is a daily roundup of briefs, notes and meetings in the world of Colorado education. To submit an item for consideration in this listing, please email us at EdNews@EdNewsColorado.org.

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