A film by Andrew Cohn
2016, 85 minutes
No. 094


Indianapolis suffers from having one of the lowest high school graduation rates in the country. Though Greg, Melissa, and Shynika have all had their setbacks as they’ve traveled to adulthood, they are optimistic about earning their high school diplomas and changing their lives.

Emmy award-winning director Andrew Cohn’s absorbing documentary observes their individual pursuits, fraught with the challenges of daily life and the broader systemic roadblocks faced by many low-income Americans, as they strive for the educational success that eluded them the first time around.

Official Selection, Tribeca Film Festival
Official Selection, Nantucket Film Festival
Official Selection, Heartland Film Festival

"A humanistic portrait of people struggling for the American dream. Benefiting greatly from its charismatic, likeable subjects, Night School displays a compassion and empathy that feels more necessary than ever." - Hollywood Reporter

"A powerful documentary that examines education In African-American communities. - Village Voice

"An absorbing documentary. Mixing personal interviews with street, home, work, school, and graduation footage, this inspirational documentary captures the setbacks, loneliness, and isolation that threaten the students’ progress. Use this to promote discussions and spark viewers to stay in school." - Booklist

"Cohn’s storytelling lets each person’s humanity rise to the top, just enough to mix expected poignancy with a simple clarity about the struggles of low-income, opportunity-challenged souls... But what Night School makes abundantly, vitally real is that the stakes feel greater this time around when life has already tried hard to give these recharged aspirants a failing grade." - LA Times

"A movie about large setbacks and small triumphs, and the grit that takes you from one to the other." - The New York Times

"Deftly captures three people pushing themselves to change the arc of their lives by returning to the world of education to get their high school diplomas." -

"Three stars. Captures genuine personal reinvention at work in these hardy souls as they come closer to achieving their dreams." - Video Librarian