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09/03/2012

Emmy-Nominated Documentary Features Winthrop Professor

Quick Facts

 Mark Dewalt's participation in the documentary "Country School - One Room, One Nation" has helped lead to an Emmy nomination.
 The documentary details Midwestern one-room schoolhouses through photographs and interviews with former students, teachers, farmers and families about their connection and experiences with the schools.
 The winners will be announced Sept. 22.

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Mark Dewalt
ROCK HILL, S.C.—Mark Dewalt’s expertise in one-room schools, a volley of calls and emails and an hours-long interview have helped lead to an Emmy nomination for the documentary “Country Schools – One Room, One Nation.”

Directed by filmmakers Kelly and Tammy Rundle, the documentary faces two others—“August Light: Wilson’s Creek and the Battle of Missouri” and “Celebrate the Ozarks on Route 66”—in the historical documentary category of the 2012 Mid-America Emmy Awards. “Country Schools” shows the strengths and weaknesses of one-room schools in the Midwest region through photographs and interviews with former students, teachers, farmers and families about their connection and experiences with the schools.

“It’s not a story about the buildings, per se, but what happened there,” Dewalt said.

Dewalt is chair of Winthrop University’s Department of Counseling, Leadership and Educational Studies and has been in the higher education field for more than 20 years. His research interests include one-room schools, Amish education, which was the focus of his first book, and Old Order culture. At Winthrop, he teaches courses in educational research, assessment and Amish culture.

Knowing of his expertise, the Rundles reached out to Dewalt and interviewed him on film. Dewalt pointed out how the one-room teachers used individualized instruction to meet the needs of all of their learners.

“Good teachers are an integral part of an effective classroom and especially critical to the success of a one-room school,” he said. “The Emmy nomination is a testament to the topic, the way the Rundles prepared the film and their expertise in building the film. They did their homework.”

Dewalt said it is an honor to be part of a team that has been nominated for a regional Emmy. The winners will be announced Sept. 22 at the gala in Kansas City. Visit the documentary’s website for information on show dates and more.

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