School Life

Duration: 100 min

Directors: Neasa Ní Chianáin, David Rane. Ireland 2016. 100 mins.

This hilarious and yet poignant documentary about two prep-school teachers on the brink of retirement, with a combined 90 years of chalkboard experience behind them, is pure magic. Housed in a Hogwarts-like 18th-century estate, Headfort, the last remaining boarding school in Ireland for primary-aged kids, has been home for John and Amanda Leyden for 46 years. For John, the differences between Latin, Mathematics and rock music are nominal; for his wife Amanda, the key to connecting with children is the book, and she uses all means to snare the young minds. In almost half a century they’ve shaped thousands of minds, but now the unthinkable looms. School Life reflects a unique kind of fondness that existed between tutor and ward in years gone by, and a genuine love of all that makes childhood so precious.

Contains infrequent strong language.

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