Documentary on U.S. education an eye opener
by Mikel Livingstong
January 31, 2012
“You probably ask yourself every day, did I make a mistake?” [Purdue University student] Wiedman said. “But every time I’m in the classroom and I’m teaching … I know this is what I want to do. I love it.”

Low Salaries Chase Talent Out of Teaching, Says Film American Teacher
by Robyn Gee
January 23, 2012
“A new film on the education circuit offers a new assessment of the answer to America’s public education woes.”

American Teacher
by Mary Kramer
January, 2012
“American Teacher
 delves significantly deeper into some of the questions raised, but not answered, in last year’s Superman.”

Rating teachers
Midmorning, Minnesota Public Radio
January 19, 2012
“A new study by Harvard and Columbia economists showed that students of teachers with a high value-add score fare better later in life.” Minnesota Public Radio speaks with one of the co-authors of that study, John Friedman, and American Teacher producer, Ninive Calegari.

Coming to DVD: American Teacher
by Patrick Berkery
January 9, 2012
“Anyone concerned about the fate of the public school system, and the national education system as a whole needs to see American Teacher.”

Spotlight: American Teacher
Gravitas Ventures
January 1, 2012
Gravitas Ventures talk with American Teacher filmmaker Vanessa Roth surrounding the making of the documentary and what she hopes this film will achieve.

New Documentary Tells the Real Story About Teaching
Illinois Federation of Teachers news
January 3, 2012
American Teacher tells the true story of the teaching profession in America. From low salaries to high teacher turnover rates to lack of resources and professional support, the film addresses the greatest challenges teachers face in classrooms every day.”

The Most Interesting Documentaries of the Year
by Kristina Rizga
Mother Jones
December 23, 2011
“With more than half of the nation’s 3.2 million public pedagogues coming up for retirement in the next decade, American Teacher succeeds in reframing education’s abstract ideological battles in terms of kitchen-table realities.”

American Teacher [PDF] by William Margold
LA X…Press, Cinema Seen
December 22, 2011
“Their names were Miss Guercio (on whom I had a massive crush {whatever that was} during the early 1950’s at McKinley Grammar School in Santa Monica), Colonel Ashley Nagle (who commanded me fairly between 1954 and 1955 at Urban Military Academy in Brentwood), and Dr. Richard Dodge (who tolerated my disdain for perfect grammar because “your thoughts are what really matter” at Santa Monica City College in the mid-Sixties), and visions of them came thundering back, as I warmly welcomed Vanessa Roth’s painfully perceptive documentary into my heart… and my mind.”

American Teacher focuses on real problems of those who stand in front of the class
By Dale Singer
December 9, 2011
St. Louis Beacon
Producer Ninive Calegari “said she wanted to make a film that highlighted the difficulties but also the absurdities that teacher have to face, such as buying own supplies or holding down second jobs, all the while they are entrusted to making thousands of little decisions each day that show how wrong that old saying is: Those who can, do. Those who can’t, teach.”

American Teacher
By Alex Zielinski
December 5, 2011
The Portland Mercury
“This eye-opening doc hits a necessary nerve—and makes you want to write thank you notes to every teacher you ever had.”

American Teacher
By Dan Lancellotti
December 1, 2011
The Snapper: Millersville University
“The movie makes you appreciate teachers and the sacrifices that they make for their students. […] The next time you see a teacher thank him/her for all that he/she does; it will be appreciated.”

Improving education and retaining good teachers
By Becky Martinez
November 16, 2011
Denver Post op-ed
“Perhaps projects like the American Teacher film will someday convince the majority of Colorado voters to support a proposition to increase education funding. However, until it is economically viable to do so, let’s continue to support efforts, especially free ones, that improve teacher sustainability.”

Marin Voice: Can Marin learn from Finland?
By Mark Phillips
November 14, 2011
Marin Independent Journal
“Watching the film, American Teacher last month, the most hopeful piece of information for me was that in Finland teaching is the career most admired by college students.”

Free showing of documentary on teachers’ struggles
By Alana Listoe
November 13, 2011
Helena Independent Record
“The movie draws attention to the long hours teachers put in outside of the classroom and demonstrates how often they are taking on second jobs to pay their bills. [Producer Ninive Calegari] recognizes that other professions are struggling in today’s economic climate, but she focuses on teachers because she sees the profession as the cornerstone of society. ‘This is one place we can’t be skimping on,’ she said.”

Learning Curve: Film touts value of teachers
By Robert Nott
November 13, 2011
The New Mexican
“In using personal stories to promote its cause, [American Teacher is] surprisingly effective — particularly at a time when teachers are taking quite a bashing.”

American Teacher documentary coming to Michigan Theater
November 12, 2011
Heritage Newspapers
“With this event we hope to show even a fraction of our appreciation for this community’s teachers,” said Amanda Uhle, 826michigan executive director, in a news release.”

Teaching is tough
By Dennis Crawford
November 11, 2011
Helena Independent Record op-ed
“Yesterday afternoon, I had the opportunity to view the compelling film “American Teacher” in Helena. This film chronicles the stories of four teachers living and working in urban and rural areas of the United States. After viewing the film, it is obvious that the teaching profession has become one of the toughest jobs in America and is getting tougher.”

Starting teacher pay is not the problem
By Jennifer Radcliffe
November 3, 2011
Houston Chronicle, School Zone blog
“It’s the lack of upward salary mobility that contributes to massive turnover among teachers, according to American Teacher, a documentary that screened in Houston this week. Teachers cannot support themselves or their families on salaries that only increase by $20,000-$30,000 over their careers.”

American Teacher
November 1, 2011
NBC Bay Area: Class Action
“Ninive Calegari, producer of the documentary “American Teacher,” and Jonathan Dearman, a teacher profiled in the film, talk about the challenges facing public school teachers.”

From the 2011 Austin Film Festival: American Teacher, A Documentary
By Ruth Vaca
October 2011
My Latino Voice
“In a country that is seen as the cream of the crop, how is it possible that teachers, the ones that teach and influence the next president, doctor, teachers, pilots, soldiers, authors and future of the U.S. not be given a good pay and full benefits?”

Film: American Teacher
By Sherry Posnick-Goodwin
October 2011
CTA Educator Volume 16 Issue 2
“The movie offers a realistic portrayal of teachers who work long hours, buy supplies out of their own pockets, strive to do their best for students, and sometimes neglect themselves and their own families in the process. At times it’s painful to watch such hardworking, idealistic, energetic individuals become increasingly worn down as pressure mounts to raise student achievement while money dwindles to provide even the basics in many classrooms. While depressing, it’s also uplifting to see these teachers do so much with so little as they meet challenges that include pregnancy, raising children, and marital problems.”

Teachers We Love
By Ronnie Cho
October 26, 2011
White House blog
“This week’s HelloGiggles profile features a teacher who puts her students first. Ninive Calegari started one of the most innovative organizations in education today and did so with teachers in mind. To quote the story, ‘Ninive is a powerful force that you can feel walk into a room; a person who you know won’t take your excuses, but would just the same wrap her arm around you and listen to your life story. She is intimidating, and inspiring, refreshing and passionate.’ Sound like anyone you know? Me too.”

Women Working to do Good: Ninive Calegari
By Kelley Lonergan
October 26, 2011
“On a personal level, we recognize the hard work of our local teachers. But that admiration gets lost in the shuffle when projected onto the global scheme. Calegari’s call to duty comes in the form of American Teacher. Produced by Calegari, along with Dave Eggers and Daniel Moulthrop, the documentary follows four public school teachers, and their struggles in the academic profession.”

Teacher documentary to be shown next week in Aberdeen
October 26, 2011
Aberdeen American News
“Directed by Academy Award–winning filmmaker Vanessa Roth and narrated by Academy Award-winner Matt Damon, the film follows four young teachers who love what they do, but have to ask themselves, ‘Can I afford to continue to teach?’”

Keller teacher is featured in documentary film
By Sandra Engelland
October 23, 2011
The Keller Citizen
“Trinity Springs Middle School teacher/coach Erik Benner is not used to all the attention he’s been getting lately. In the past few months, he’s traveled to both coasts to walk the red carpet for film premieres. He’s been asked for autographs and interviews. ‘It’s weird when [U.S. Education Secretary] Arne Duncan knows you by name and talks about you in speeches,’ Benner said. ‘It’s been an amazing trip.’”

Austin Film Festival weekend wrapup
October 23, 2011
Big Shiny Robot
“I’m only going to mention a few of the films I saw Saturday and Sunday, as one of them was my absolute favorite. American Teacher is a documentary based loosely on a book called Teachers Have It Easy The Big Sacrifices and Small Salaries of America’s Teachers. Narrated by Matt Damon, it tells the story of four teachers across America, some in rural areas, others in urban, dealing with near universal problems: low pay, long hours, and an increasing scorn for the work that they do (anyone been paying attention to the news for the last year?). One of them, a Central Texas native, tells the story of having to get a second job just to try to make ends meet, and having parents of his students come in and go through the humiliation of explaining that this is his second job.”

An Up-Close Look at Teachers
By Nathan Bernier
October 21, 2011
“The Austin Film Festival swings into high gear this weekend, with screenings all over town, including a documentary that takes viewers inside the classroom to celebrate America’s educators.”

In the moment
By Leah Garchik
October 20, 2011
San Francisco Chronicle
“The documentary American Teacher, which just finished a run at the Roxie, was produced by Ninive Calegari and Dave Eggers, the 826 Valencia/McSweeney’s crowd. The movie wouldn’t have happened at all without the support of a home team that included financial contributors Warren Hellman, Isabel Allende and the Fleishhacker Foundation; legal assistance from SNR Denton; and production assistance from the S.F. Film Society, where Graham Leggat’s “team embraced our film and helped me with each step,” says Calegari. There’ll be another showing at the Roxie on Nov. 21, to benefit the group San Francisco YouthWorker to Teacher Pathway, and after that, Microsoft’s Partners in Learning is making it possible for anyone to host showings around the country. So far, the producers have heard from representatives of 400 communities that want to show it, from every state but Alaska. Oh, why would anyone need teachers in Wasilla?”

America for Teachers!
By John H. Jackson
October 18, 2011
Huffington Post
“American Teacher, the recently released movie narrated by Matt Damon, notes that during the next 10 years the United States must attract more than 1.8 million full-time teachers — that’s more than half of the current total. This is not likely to happen if young professionals see teachers as overworked, underpaid and routinely demonized. And, as is often the case, teaching should not be a temporary job until something better comes along. Our students, democracy and economy will not grow stronger if this is what teaching looks like to those entering the workforce.”

Rose-colored lenses on teachers
By Sharon Broussard
October 12, 2011
The Plain Dealer
“The film extols the dedication of four standout teachers, one of whom left the profession because of the poor pay, who give their hearts and souls to teaching public school students. It is a powerful plea for higher compensation to attract the next generation of teachers.”

San Francisco Chronicle: The Mission Blog
By Hadley Robinson
October 9, 2011
American Teacher is playing at the Roxie. It’s a sobering documentary about the financial struggles of being a teacher in this country, co-produced by Dave Eggers and narrated by Matt Damon.”

American Teacher Begins the Conversation at Skidmore [PDF] By Daniel Schechtman
October 7, 2011
Saratoga TODAY
“One of the themes of the film, and certainly one of the greatest challenges facing the teaching profession, is closely tied to how the public percieves educators. By intimately following the struggles of four teachers across the country, Calegari hopes the public will get a better understanding of just how difficult a teacher’s job is, as well as how undervalued the profession has become.”

Film Listings
October 4, 2011
San Francisco Bay Guardian
“Public school teachers have one of the most important jobs in America — and most of them are paid very little in proportion to the long, difficult hours they put in (truth, no matter what Tea Partiers say). Vanessa Roth’s American Teacher — narrated by Matt Damon, co-produced by Dave Eggers, and spurred by the nonprofit Teacher Salary Project — examines the current state of the teaching profession, from its many drawbacks (like those mentioned above) to its chief rewards, namely, the feelings of joy that come from helping to expand young minds.”

American Teacher
By Nora Lee Mandel
October 4, 2011
American Teacher aims to improve the image of those who been seen in the media as the public enemy No. 1 of school reformers and budget cutters.

Waiting for Reform
By Rahul Chadha
October 5, 2011
In its most compelling moments, the film serves as a window into the financial stresses of some talented teachers. Erik Benner, a teacher working in rural Texas, flirts with financial ruin while holding down a second job.”

American Teacher Has a Lesson: Superman Is a Myth; Teachers Are the Real Heroes
By Gar Smith
Berkeley Daily Planet
October 4, 2011
Hold onto your cape, corporate crusaders, because a new documentary is set to hit the screen like a load of kryptonite and is guaranteed to blow holes in that argument. American Teacher, a documentary directed by Academy Award-winner Vanessa Roth and narrated by Oscar-winner Matt Damon, puts the superhero cape where it belongs — on the shoulders of the country’s dedicated and self-sacrificing teachers.”

City teachers must juggle jobs to make ends meet, shows documentary film American Teacher
By Gina Salamone
NY Daily News
October 3, 2011
After a day’s work teaching first grade at PS 261 in Boerum Hill, Jamie Fidler tutors students. To make ends meet, the Brooklyn mom sometimes holds a third job.”

American Teacher
By Sarah Anderson
Spectrum Culture
October 3, 2011
Director Vanessa Roth wants to change the way you think about teachers in America. She begins her new documentary, American Teacher, with clips of former teachers speaking fondly about why they loved their jobs so much and a shot of Bill Gates instructing an audience that the single most important factor in providing good education is having good teachers. Roth presents statistic after statistic meant to demonstrate the plight of modern day educators. And she reminds us that the future of our nation depends almost solely on the quality of teachers in our public schools.”

Must-see movie: American Teacher
By Patrick Berkery
Philly Burbs site
October 3, 2011
A couple of months back, a friend who is an educator turned me on to the 2005 book Teachers Have it Easy: The Big Sacrifices and Small Salaries of America’s Teachers. Written by Daniel Moulthrop, Dave Eggers, and Ninive Calegari, the book was sort of a pre-cursor to the current national debate over teacher accountability and compensation. It features interviews with dozens of teachers about the disparate challenges of their work, their respective passions for their profession, their frustrations with public perception of their value, and their financial struggles to remain in their chosen profession.”

American Teacher
This Week in New York
October 1, 2011
3 out of 4 stars. The eighty-one-minute film looks at the surprising lack of status, salary, respect, and training afforded what is considered in other countries the most important profession by examining the cases of four current or former American teachers, dedicated men and women who are born educators but who have been deeply affected by a seriously flawed system.”

American Teacher is life behind the scenes for educators
By Alysia Satchel
October 1, 2011
Dan Moulthrop, the Curator of Conversation at the Civic Commons, stopped by our studios at Channel 3 to tell us more about American Teacher. It’s a documentary based on a book he co-authored called Teachers Have It Easy: The Big Sacrifices and Small Salaries of America’s Teachers.”

Review – American Teacher
By Manny Lozano
Very Aware
September 30, 2011
3 stars. Vanessa Roth’s documentary, American Teacher focuses on the impact that budget cuts, increased classroom size, and the increasing tenuousness of teaching as a viable and economically sound profession with a singular thesis: increase the pay of teachers to allow them to focus more on teaching and their students so they wouldn’t have to take the little income they make and put it back into their classrooms on basic supplies, or like some of the other teachers profiled in the film, take second jobs or leave the profession entirely to keep themselves and their families financially afloat.”

Teachers Have it Easy? Talking with Vanessa Roth, Director of New Documentary American Teacher

By Emily Wilson
September 30, 2011
A new documentary, narrated by Matt Damon and based on a book by Dave Eggers and Nínive Calegari, shows another facet of the troubles teachers in the US face.”

America and Teachers
By Marc Severson
Tucson Citizen – Tired Tucson Teacher blog
September 30, 2011
The film’s narrator, Matt Damon, notes that in the next years over half of the current teachers will be eligible for retirement. While that may be a source of optimism for short-sighted legislators in search of additional revenue, the potential loss of experience to the profession is staggering. Think of what would occur if half the doctors in the country were about to retire, or half the dentists or half of any necessary profession.

American Teacher: New Film Rebuts Vilification of Underpaid, Dedicated Public School Teachers
By Juan Gonzalez
Democracy Now!
September 30, 2011
“The documentary is a rebuttal of sorts to pundits who portray public school educators as cushioned recipients of tax-payer supported benefits, extended summer vacations and low accountability. We speak with the film’s Academy Award-winning director, Vanessa Roth, and with Brooklyn first-grade public school teacher, Jamie Fidler, who is featured in the film.”

American Teacher
By Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times
Septemer 30, 2011
“As we watch the individuals in American Teacher struggle with the burdens the system places on them, it’s hard not to feel like crying, both for them specifically and for our national culture.”

Film Review: American Teacher
By David Noh
Film Journal
September 30, 2011
“Terrific, uplifting and heartbreaking study of what it’s like to teach in America today should inspire intense admiration and even more intense anger over what is revealed.”

American Teacher
By Joe Neumaier
NY Daily News
September 30, 2011
“This heartbreaking and essential look into the lives of those who put so much into educating other people’s children ought to be seen by anyone concerned about the fate of the public school system, and the nation as a whole.”

Film with Local Ties Goes Into Wide Release
By Mary Mann
South Orange Patch
September 30, 2011
“Movie stars are often judged to be a less than intellectual crowd, but a new documentary stars one local who has brains to spare. Rhena Jasey, formerly a teacher at Seth Boyden Elementary of the South Orange-Maplewood School District, is one of four teachers profiled in the new film American Teacher.”

Dave Eggers Says Teachers Should Make More
By Neal Conan
NPR’s Talk of the Nation
September 29, 2011
“Writer Dave Eggers argues the best way to attract great teachers is to pay them more. Eggers and activist Ninive Calegari co-founded the Teacher Salary Project, to raise awareness about the low salaries that they say drive many teachers from the classroom.”

What’s a Teacher Worth?
By Neil Genzlinger
The New York Times
September 29, 2011
“A nicely drawn study of how a few teachers in varied settings have coped with a chosen profession that doesn’t pay a living wage.”

Exclusive Interview with Producer Ninive Calegari and Official Trailer
September 29, 2011
SideReel sat down with producer Ninive Calegari to talk about her newest documentary film, American Teacher.

American Teacher: Film Review
By Frank Scheck
The Hollywood Reporter
September 29, 2011
“Documentarian Vanessa Roth presents the teachers’ side to the current national debate about education and what teachers get paid.”

NY Teachers Star in Film that Makes Case for Educators
By Mark Scheerer and Dallas Heltzell
Public News Service
September 29, 2011
“American Teacher follows four public school teachers, two of them from New York, as they do a job they love but find increasingly frustrating in the face of a lack of respect from all quarters.”

American Teacher
By Alison Willmore
A.V. Club
September 29, 2011
It’s impossible not to feel for the main characters, who all love what they do while continually being forced to question how feasible it is.”

American Teacher gives teachers their due
By James van Maanen
Trust Movies blog
September 29, 2011
“One of the very smart things this movie does is to show us the top three countries in terms of test scores for the kids — Finland, Singapore and South Korea — and then also shows what these countries have in common regarding how they treat their teachers.”

Film Review: American Teacher
By Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat
Spirituality and Practice
September 29, 2011
“Roth skillfully weaves important research figures into the compelling stories of teachers who have suffered on account of the personal and financial sacrifices they have made in order to follow their passion of interacting with children in a classroom.”

KPFK’s Sojourner Truth Radio
By Margaret Prescod
September 28, 2011
Margaret Prescod interviews American Teacher film star Erik Benner and producer Nínive Calegari.

A film on education that gets it right
By Mark Phillips
Washington Post, Answer Sheet blog
September 28, 2011
“Every policymaker should be required to see the new film American Teacher, which powerfully reveals the huge challenge that the country faces in attracting and keeping the best teachers to help improve public education.”

Film Review: American Teacher
By Kristina Rizga
Mother Jones
September 28, 2011
“With more than half of the nation’s 3.2 million public pedagogues coming up for retirement in the next decade, American Teacher succeeds in reframing education’s abstract ideological battles in terms of kitchen-table realities.”

Matt Damon Will School You: In Praise of Educators in American Teacher
By Ernest Hardy
The Village Voice
September 28, 2011
“What makes the film more than just a cheerleading countermove is the towering amount of research it contains: historical data tracing the profession from being the domain of men to largely that of women, and the cynical economic ploy behind the shift; terrifying figures on the rates of those fleeing the profession as well as the looming crisis of a mass retirement of elderly teachers; the sobering numbers of teachers living at the poverty level and/or holding down a second job.”

A Discussion of the Film American Teacher
Education Nation
September 26, 2011
Education Nation hosts the world premiere of the film American Teacher. The filmmakers and film stars join Al Roker for discussions before and after the screening.

The Rise and Fall of the American Teacher
By Shirin Sadeghi
New America Media
September 26, 2011
“Jonathan Dearman was a teacher in San Francisco for 5 years before he left the profession to go into his family business of real estate. He is one of a
handful of teachers who are featured in the new documentary American Teacher and he told New America Now Host Shirin Sadeghi what it’s like to be an educator in America.”

American Teacher film argues teachers aren’t paid enough, but ignores merit pay debate
By Liz Goodwin
Yahoo News – The Lookout Blog
September 26, 2011
“The film profiles four enthusiastic public school teachers who are struggling to survive on their salaries. One teacher reluctantly leaves his job for a better salary as a real estate agent. (A former student of his tells the camera she cried when he left.) And another holds down an after-school job at a consumer electronics store to make ends meet, dreading “embarrassing” run-ins with acquaintances at the store.”

Roundtable on American Teacher
By Jane Williams
September 23, 2011
Jane Williams interviews American Teacher film star Jamie Fidler, producer Nínive Calegari, producer/director Vanessa Roth for Bloomberg Radio.

American Teacher Takes a Look Inside the Teaching Profession
By Nínive Calegari
Education Nation
September 22, 2011
“I witnessed firsthand how these creative, warm, hilarious, and intelligent teachers made sincere connections with students and provided inspiring lessons day after day, but I knew the outside world didn’t see what I saw. I often felt and heard a very different impression of our profession.”

A season of documentaries
By Iris Mann
September 21, 2011
“’I realized that this was a group of people who are scapegoated and misunderstood,’ said filmmaker Vanessa Roth, ‘when, really, the way we value teachers is so antiquated, as though the job is sort of a hobby and not completely essential.’”

Do Teachers Have It Made? Hardly, a New Film Says
By Anna M. Phillips
New York Times SchoolBook
September 20, 2011
“The film, American Teacher, is a rebuttal of sorts to the pundits and politicians who are eager to battle unions and write teachers off as the over-protected recipients of Cadillac benefits, extended summer vacations and low expectations.”

New film fights negative perception of teachers
By Jenna Zwang
eSchool News
September 16, 2011
As lawmakers work to strip teachers of their collective bargaining rights and school reformers place much of the blame for the problems plaguing public education at their feet, a new film from former teacher Ninive Calegari strives to tell the story of what it’s really like for American school teachers from their own perspective.”

American Teacher and the Challenges of Finding a Few to Speak For the Many
By Edward Delaney
POV blog
September 16, 2011
“American Teacher is a piece of reportage as well as a piece of advocacy that aims at the nation’s education woes and how an investment in teachers could turn it around.”

Classroom Confidential: ‘American Teacher’ Schools on a Misunderstood Profession
By Wanda Bershen blog
September 13, 2011
“Despite the crisis situation that emerges from American Teacher, the film is not a rant, nor is it depressing. Rather, it has the effect of making us greatly admire these young people, and then curse a system that defeats and wastes their enthusiasm, their training and their commitment.”

American Teacher: Why are the great ones leaving?
By Loni Kao Stark
Stark Insider
September 12, 2011
“The film makes it clear that there is a problem with how excellent teachers are treated and paid in our society. It humanizes the national debate, by focusing on the lives of four teachers, but also presents hard data to show their stories are not anomalies.”

The Teacher Salary Project: An Inside Look at Teaching in America
By Katherine Bonnin
Encore Magazine
September 2, 2011
“In an interview with Encore magazine, one of the film’s producers Nínive Calegari says, “Ultimately I would like to change how we value our teaching profession and I would like to see teachers being able to earn a legitimate salary so that they can stay in the profession and combat the other challenges together.”

The teacher who encouraged me to write
By Dave Eggers
Salon and TeacherLove
August 1, 2011
In this essay, our producer Dave Eggers tells the story of the teacher who pushed him to write. Check it out and contribute your own story to TeacherLove, a site where you can honor the teachers who made a difference in your education.

Working Toward “Wow”: A Vision for a New Teaching Profession
Remarks of Arne Duncan to the National Board of Professional Teaching Standards
July 29, 2011
“Today, too often the heart-breaking reality is that a good teacher with a decade of classroom experience is hard-pressed to raise a family on a teacher’s salary. That must change. There is a new movie calledAmerican Teacher coming out produced by the writer Dave Eggers and a teacher, Nínive Caligari, profiling several outstanding teachers. One of them drives a forklift at night to support his family—and eventually the pressure of two jobs costs him his marriage. Another teacher in the movie—an African-American male elementary school teacher—finally quits and goes into real estate where he earns twice as much, working half as hard. When we are losing talented, passionate educators like this, the profession is in crisis.”

One Teacher: Why I Quit
CNN, Natasha Curry reports
July 20, 2011
Former Teacher of the Year, Linda DeRegnaucourt, talks about her “heartbreaking” decision to leave the field of teaching for nursing; and founder of The Teacher Salary Project, Ninive Calegari, states how holding on to great teachers is key to the success of our nation’s students.

American Teacher: Film Review
By Dennis Harvey
Variety Magazine
June 25, 2011
“Part straight appreciation, part plea for greater renumeration, American Teacher opines that one major reason U.S. public education has been in decline for years is because educators aren’t given the respect or wages that a tough — and important — job should command.”

A movie that tells a real story of American teachers
By Michael Alison Chandler
Washington Post: Answer Sheet blog
June 1, 2011
“At a moment when bad teachers have been targeted as the biggest problem in public education and lawmakers are scrambling to find different ways to evaluate and fire them, a new movie now being shown in previews and premiering later this year takes a less punishing view of our 3.2 million public school teachers, focusing instead on the need to support and pay them better.”

Film Depicts Hardships, Dedication of the American Teacher
By Anthony Rebora
Education Week: Teaching Now blog
May 25, 2011
“Researchers, policymakers, and parents tend to agree that effective teachers are the key to high-quality schools—and, by implication, to maintaining an educated and thriving citizenry. So why are teachers in the United States so undervalued and lately even disparaged?”

American Teacher and Why Teacher Compensation Matters
By ABCDE Staff
ABCDE: A Blog Covering DC Education
May 25, 2011
American Teacher is a truly captivating documentary, not least because it shows, through gripping portraits like Benner’s, why we must value our nation’s educators more by paying them more.”

No Calling Out, Raise Your Hand
By Sarah and Isabel Allende
My Invented Isabel
May 5, 2011
American Teacher “follows the struggles of several teachers, calls for action, and raises some important questions. What sort of nation do we want to be? How are we going to measure up in the global economy if we can’t even prepare our kids to compete?”

The High Cost of Low Teacher Salaries
By Dave Eggers and Nínive Calegari
New York Times op-ed
May 1, 2011
“When we don’t get the results we want in our military endeavors, we don’t blame the soldiers. We don’t say, “It’s these lazy soldiers and their bloated benefits plans! That’s why we haven’t done better in Afghanistan!” No, if the results aren’t there, we blame the planners. We blame the generals, the secretary of defense, the Joint Chiefs of Staff. No one contemplates blaming the men and women fighting every day in the trenches for little pay and scant recognition. And yet in education we do just that.”

Education is in Crisis. Let’s Clone Dave Eggers
By Douglas McGray
San Francisco Magazine
May 1, 2011
“If we don’t do something right now, the California dream of a decent college education for every hard-working kid will be no more. Enter the writer turned publisher turned philanthropic startup genius…”

YO! Youth Outlook Multimedia: An American Teacher
Video by Eming Piansay and Valerie Klinker
May 2011
“As America’s Educational system continues to be underfunded and supported, many teachers are becoming pushed out of the profession due to fact that they are unable to support themselves and their families on the average teacher’s income. YO! interviews Jonathan Dearman, one of the your subjects featured in the new documentary American Teacher, which sheds light on the current state of educators in the United States.”

Jonathan Dearman on Bay Sunday

CBS 5’s Bay Sunday
April 17, 2011
CBS 5’s Sydnie Kohara interviews film star Jonathan Dearman and Rachel Rosen, Director of Programming from the San Francisco International Film Festival.

Teacher Layoffs – A Destructive Annual Event
By Dave Eggers
San Francisco Chronicle
March 22, 2011
Our very own Dave Eggers writes about the annual event of teacher layoffs and the impact this disruptive practice has on the teaching profession.

Dave Eggers Charms with Sincerity at Miami Book Fair
By Liz Tracy
Miami News Times
November 21, 2010
American Teacher producer Dave Eggers mentions the project at Miami Dade College.

Teacher Salaries and Shortage Areas
By Christopher Reeve
Huffington Post
November 15, 2010
“When I was young, my mother was always tired. On many days she would arrive home from work, lie on the sofa, and fall asleep. I didn’t understand how anyone could be that tired. Until I also became a teacher.”

Strong New Films Go After the Much Hyped “Waiting For Superman” and Its Simplistic Educational Analysis
By Megan Driscoll
November 15, 2010
Both The Teacher Salary Project and Producer Nínive Calegari are featured in this story on new documentaries taking an in-depth look at issues in the American education system.

Help the Teacher Salary Project Boost Our Profession
Edutopia blog entry
February 17, 2010
Producer Nínive Calegari writes “I’ll be happy when excellent teachers don’t have to work second jobs to pay their bills,” and much more.

The Teacher Salary Project: Changing the Way We See Teachers
By Sara Bernard – Education
February 4, 2010
“With all this talk of teacher effectiveness — and of research that points again and again to classroom teachers being the most significant factor in student achievement — it makes sense to take a look at how teachers are compensated. Enter The Teacher Salary Project…”

Brian Lehrer Show
January 25, 2010
Producer Nínive Calegari interviews on the Brian Lehrer Show about why teachers so are important for future generations.

The GOOD 100 : The Teacher Salary Project
GOOD Magazine
Fall 2009 Issue
“The Teacher Salary Project is a multipronged media and advocacy effort to remind a forgetful America how important, overworked, and underpaid our public-school teachers are…”

The Teacher Salary Project
By Josh Marks
Variety blog entry
August 6, 2008
“Academy Award–winning filmmaker Vanessa Roth (Freeheld) and Pulitzer Prize finalist author Dave Eggers (A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius) are teaming up to take on teachers’ salaries in an upcoming feature-length documentary that promises to do for wage inequality in the educational system what Michael Moore did for our broken health care system in Sicko.”

Unsung Heroes
By Rafe Esquith
Washington Post review: Teachers Have It Easy: The Big Sacrifices and Small Salaries of America’s Teachers
June 26, 2008
“As a classroom teacher for almost a quarter-century, I have had the often frustrating experience of reading books and articles about education that I know do not even approach the truth…Now comes Teachers Have It Easy, a book that, I’m pleased to say, is full of truth. In a lively, well-organized format, authors Daniel Moulthrop, Nínive Clements Calegari and Dave Eggers have provided one of the most accurate descriptions of the world of teaching I have read in a long time.”

The Teacher Salary Project
By Bill Ferriter (Teacher Leaders Network)
Blog entry on The Tempered Radical
August 2, 2008
“Over the past several years, one of the central issues that has driven my work has been helping to redefine how teachers are paid. Watching colleagues walk away from our profession dissatisfied with compensation models built on single salary schedules and growing tired of constantly searching for extra dollars to pad my income, I can’t think of a more urgent issue for educators to wrestle with.”

New Interactive Project Aims to Document the Important Work of Teachers
American Federation of Teachers website (
July 29, 2008
“Teachers have a chance to get involved early on in a unique project that will ultimately result in a documentary film highlighting the important work of educators in the classroom as well as the challenges they face every day.”

The Teacher Salary Project Has Launched

Blog entry on, Dave Eggers’ wish blog
July 28, 2008
“On Friday, a press release went out announcing the launch of the website for The Teacher Salary Project. This website is an interactive forum to continue the conversation on teachers’ salaries that began with the book Teachers Have It Easy: The Big Sacrifices and Small Salaries of America’s Teachers, written by Daniel Moulthrop, Dave Eggers, and Nínive Calegari.”

It’s Official: A Documentary on the Professional Lives of Teachers
By Claus von Zastrow
Blog entry on Public School Insights
July 26, 2008
“Yesterday, Eggers, Roth, and Calegari sent out a press release announcing the launch of a new website,, that they describe as ‘the first step in what will become a new kind of documentary film. Through your stories, your contributions, and your outreach efforts, we will change how the best teachers are valued in our society.’”

The Teacher Salary Project Is Launched
826 Valencia – 826 News
July 25, 2008
“The documentary will tell the stories of the men and women who do the heavy lifting in education, the ones closest to our children—the 3.2 million teachers who spend every day in classrooms in every corner of the country. The film will follow three to five teachers at different stages in their careers, all of whom are struggling with the conditions in which they’re teaching.”

Documenting the Professional Lives of Teachers: Part III of Our Dave Eggers Interview
By Claus von Zastrow
Blog entry on Public School Insights
May 27, 2008
“In this third and final installment of our interview, Eggers announces his plans to create a new documentary depicting the professional lives of teachers.”

Pay teachers more, increase accountability, say ed “mavericks”
By Kelly Vaughan
GothamSchools Newsroom
GOOD Magazine brought together three ‘mavericks’ of the education world for a panel discussion last night. Wendy Kopp, founder of Teach For America (TFA), and Nínive Calegari, CEO of literacy nonprofit 826 National and producer of a documentary film about teacher salary reform, took on the teacher-pay system.”

Article by Leah Garchik
San Francisco Chronicle
October 20, 2008
“The gang at 826 Valencia, led by co-founders Dave Eggers and Nínive Calegari, has turned its muscle to the insufficient salaries paid teachers. The goal is ‘to honor teachers and to demonstrate that they’re critical to the viability of our democracy’ by making a feature-length Studs Terkel–style documentary, directed by Vanessa Roth. The movie (already underway) will focus on the underappreciated plight of those who have dedicated their professional lives to serving the next generation.”

Teaching in America: The Impossible Dream
By ZP Heller
September 15, 2005
“Many public school teachers today must work two jobs to survive, and can’t afford to buy homes or raise families. A new book asks why we treat our teachers so poorly.”

Reading, Writing, Retailing
By Dave Eggers, Nínive Calegari, and Daniel Moulthrop
New York Times opinion piece
June 27, 2005
“Most teachers love teaching, but teaching is often not so easy to love…Teachers’ salaries are well below what similarly educated professionals expect…Meanwhile, President Bush’s education law, known as No Child Left Behind, insists that by 2006 all teachers be ‘highly qualified.’ A laudable goal, clearly beyond debate. But while school districts must find increasingly qualified teachers, the legislation does not provide enough money to substantially increase teachers’ earning potential.”

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An interview with Daniel Moulthrop, Nínive Calegari, and Dave Eggers


Live at Housing Works Bookstore Cafe

New York City

The authors of Teachers Have It Easy: The Big Sacrifices and Small Salaries of America’s Teachers discuss their book and the plight of American public schools.