The Fairfield Theatre Company will continue its partnership with "Independent Lens" and PBS to bring Emmy Award-winning documentaries to StageOne, 70 Sanford St. The free screening of "The Graduates/Los Graduatos" opens the series at 8 p.m. tonight (Monday, Sept. 23).

The screening will be followed by a panel discussion. "Independent Lens" is an Emmy Award-winning weekly series airing on PBS.

"The Graduates" explores the pressing issues of the Latino dropout crisis through the eyes of six inspiring young students from across the United States who are part of an ongoing effort to increase graduation rates for a growing Latino population. Much more than a survey of contemporary policy debates, the student profiles in "The Graduates" offer a first-hand perspective on the challenges facing many Latino high school students, including over-crowded schools, crime-ridden neighborhoods, teen pregnancy, and pressure to contribute to the family finances.

"Given the overwhelmingly positive response to last year's Community Cinema films, we are very excited to have been selected again to present this thought-provoking series at FTC," Producing Artistic Director John Reid said in a release.

"We were pleasantly surprised by the attendance at the films and the participation of the moviegoers as they energetically engaged in discussions with panelists and fellow audience members. This was a great step forward in FTC's quest to diversify programming."

Following the screening, a discussion will be led by panelists Jane E. Ferreira president/CEO of Mercy Learning Center, Betsy A. Bowen, professor of English at Fairfield University, Maria Moreno, child care supervisor at Mercy Learning Center, and Yamalie Comacho, GED graduate of Mercy Learning Center.

Tickets can be purchased online at