Cyrus Michaelson is the student body president of Bouchard Academy, a predominantly African-American boarding school in North Philadelphia.
One month before graduation in June 1991, he is injured and falls into a coma after being pursued by the Philadelphia Police and school security late at night. Whether Cyrus’s actions were criminal or not is a question that divides both the school and the city.
Pennsylvania State Penitentiary
As graduation approaches, Valedictorian Patrick Shields is under pressure from all sides as to the position he should take for his speech, which will not only be delivered in the presence of controversial Mayor Frank Russo but televised on all major TV channels.
Although Patrick is looking for a victory lap over his final two weeks of school, events conspire against him as he is under investigation for criminal activity, forcing him to confront his own moral lapses and the ghosts of his family’s past.