The DNAinfo archives brought to you by WNYC.
Read the press release here.

Curious About the Selective Enrollment Process? Check Out This Documentary

By Stephanie Lulay | October 19, 2015 3:30pm
"Selected," a documentary about Whitney Young Magnet High School, will be shown at the high school this week.
View Full Caption
Selected; DNAinfo/Devlin Brown

NEAR WEST SIDE — A documentary that follows real Chicago Public Schools students through the selective enrollment process will screen for the public at Whitney Young Magnet High School this week. 

The "SelectED" documentary will be shown in the afternoon and evenings Monday-Thursday in the school's auditorium 211 S. Laflin St. The 95-minute film, produced and directed by Chicago native Kayla McCormick, follows five CPS students at Whitney Young, and examines the truth and challenges of public urban education as their journeys progress.

Tickets to the Chicago premiere of "SelectED" are for sale online for $8. Showings are: at 6:30 p.m. Monday; at 3:30 p.m. Tuesday; at 3:30 and 6:30 p.m. Wednesday; and at 6:30 p.m. Thursday.

According to the film's trailer, 10,000 students apply annually to be admitted to the Near West Side high school. Only 350 will make the cut.

Earlier this year, Whitney Young Principal Dr. Joyce Kenner said the raw emotion captured in the film left her speechless.

"We've known for decades that we have something very unique and fundamentally groundbreaking here at Whitney Young," Kenner said. "The process of filming this documentary brought into sharp focus that our little experiment from the 1970s is still a nationwide model for what really works in public education."

The film debuted at the Sarasota Film Festival in April and was first shown in Chicago at a fundraiser later that month. It was commissioned by two Whitney Young parents who wanted to spotlight the school. On the flipside, the film also explores the "dark side" of the stress endured by many Young students and parents, McCormick said last year.

Whitney Young, named after prominent Civil Rights leader Whitney M. Young Jr., opened in 1975 as the city's first public magnet high school and consistently ranks among the top in the country. Alumni include First Lady Michelle Obama, former Duke basketball player Jahlil Okafor, and Lana and Andy Wachowski, the sibling creators of "The Matrix."

Okafor is prominently featured in the movie, which was filmed during his senior year.

For more neighborhood news, listen to DNAinfo Radio here: