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 See ‘Screenagers’ Documentary for Free at SDCOE

The San Diego County Office of Education’s (SDCOE) Student Support Services department is hosting two screenings of the 2016 award-winning documentary “Screenagers,” which explores the challenges of managing screen time and parenting in the digital age.

The screenings will be held at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. June 29 in the Joe Rindone Regional Technology Center at the main SDCOE campus, 6401 Linda Vista Drive, San Diego 92111. The event is free and open to the public, but advance registration is requested online

“Screenagers,” directed by Stanford University-trained physician Delaney Ruston, is recommended for parents, children, and teens. The film explores parenting and growing up in the digital age, delving into the vulnerable corners of 21st-century family life, and depicting the messy struggles over social media, video games, academics, and internet addiction.

Authors, psychologists, and brain scientists weigh in with solutions for how parents can empower their children to navigate the digital world.

“Managing screen time and digital distractions among children and adolescents is a major concern when it comes to their mental health and social-emotional well-being,” said Don Buchheit, interim assistant superintendent of Student Services and Programs at SDCOE. “This documentary is an excellent vehicle for explaining to parents and kids the science of screen time’s effect on children, and for prompting a discussion about the amount of time their kids spend on electronic devices.”

Ruston, the filmmaker, has said in interviews that she started the documentary amid her own struggles with her children as they spent more and more time on social media or playing video games. She also saw screen time issues with her patients. So Ruston decided to follow the science and share her journey.

“Excessive use of screens could harm the physical development of young people’s brains,” Ruston told The New York Times last year. “Studies show a correlation between too much screen time and worse attention spans, as well as negative effects on learning.”