With school back in session, we’re reconnecting with local schools through our youth program, newportFILM edu.

This year, thanks to the support from 11th Hour Racing, Salve Regina University & the Jane Pickens Theater, this fall’s newportFILM edu program will serve over 1,300 Aquidneck Island public & private school students from grades 5th through 12th with four screenings of the captivating eco-doc, Chasing Coral.

Seeking to shed light on the fragile state of our oceans’ coral reefs, Chasing Coral takes a deep dive into the life – and death – of coral reefs around the globe.

Coral reefs are the nursery for all life in the oceans, a remarkable ecosystem that sustains us. Yet with carbon emissions warming the seas, a phenomenon called “coral bleaching”—a sign of mass coral death—has been accelerating around the world, and the public has no idea of the scale or implication of the catastrophe silently raging underwater.

Chasing Coral taps into the collective will and wisdom of an ad man, a self-proclaimed coral nerd, top-notch camera designers, and renowned marine biologists as they invent the first time-lapse camera to record bleaching events as they happen. Unfortunately, the effort is anything but simple, and the team doggedly battles technical malfunctions and the force of nature in pursuit of their golden fleece: documenting the indisputable and tragic transformation below the waves.

With its breathtaking photography, nail-biting suspense, and startling emotion, Chasing Coral is a dramatic revelation that won’t have audiences sitting idle for long.  

newportFILM hosted the first of four youth screenings in November, bringing together students from Thompson Middle School, Jamestown Middle School, St. Philomena’s, and the MET School. After the film, students were led in a discussion by Prof. Graham Forester, PhD, from the University of Rhode Island’s School of Environment and Life Sciences.

newportFILM first screened Chasing Coral in July on the lawn at St. George’s School as part of newportFILM outdoors. If you missed it, the film is also now available on Netflix. More about the film at www.ChasingCoral.com.  

And because the message of Chasing Coral – like many of the films we screen at newportFILM – doesn’t need to end after the credits, here are a few ideas for how to share the film’s message:

Through the platform of the sailing and marine community, 11th Hour Racing programs foster ocean stewardship, increase our understanding of the ocean, and support the development of innovative solutions to the challenges that impact the marine environment. 11th Hour Racing has three program areas: grants, sponsorships, and ambassadors. For more information please visit 11thhourracing.org.

If you think your school, or home-schooled child would be interested in attending future educational screenings, contact us at info@newportFILM.com.

Photo Credit: Jennifer Manville Photography