Documentary Follows Brooklyn’s Championship Middle School Chess Team

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The trials and triumphs of the chess team at New York City’s Intermediate School 318 in Brooklyn -- dubbed “the most successful middle school chess team in the nation” -- will hit the big screen this week as the award-winning documentary “Brooklyn Castle” opens in theaters nationwide.

Brooklyn CastleAlthough the documentary chronicles the middle school team’s quest to build on its championship-winning legacy, it uses the team’s story to illustrate the importance of after-school programs and the challenges associated with finding funding for them.

“While working to excel at the chess board, the students and teachers face another major hurdle as cutbacks to after-school programs threaten the very existence of their program,” press materials for the documentary state.

A trailer of the documentary can be viewed here.

The chess team at IS 318 has been featured on the front page of the New York Times and other news outlets.

This December, Youth Today will feature Chess-in-the-Schools, a New York-based nonprofit affiliated with IS 318 during much of its championship success. But instead of focusing on chess, the story will focus on the organization’s College Bound program, which gets youth from high-poverty areas to apply for selective colleges that they might not otherwise consider.