Let the Little Light Shine

  • Feature Film
  • 2022
  • 90 Mins

National Teachers Academy (NTA) is considered a beacon for Black children: a top-ranked, high-performing elementary school in the fastest growing neighborhood on Chicago's South Side. As the neighborhood gentrifies, a wealthy parents’ group seeks to close NTA and replace it with a high school campus. How will NTA's community fight to save their beloved institution? A co-production of POV and ITVS, in association with Black Public Media.

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Film Credits

  • Kevin Shaw Director
  • Steve James Producer
  • Rachel Dickson Producer

Critical Acclaim

A rousing tribute to grassroots activism... Delivers the visceral impact of all six Rocky movies and a couple of Creed films put together.

Michael Phillips, Chicago Tribune

Let the Little Light Shine follows a remarkable movement: a group of people, some white and some Black, upper-middle-class and low-income, advocating for Black children’s futures. It weaves from classroom to district boardroom, a student’s kitchen to City Hall, meetings for the conversion of NTA and against. In doing so, it delves into the thorny politics of gentrification – the sanitized language of displacement, who and what is lost in the name of growth.

Adrian Horton, The Guardian

An example of grassroots activism that manages to achieve what few had thought possible, while refusing to let the cries of the people be silenced. What a glorious sight to behold.

Matt Fagerholm, Roger Ebert