The Least of TheseSchools Not Jails
Clark Lyda, Jesse Cunningham
USA, Documentary, 2008
61 min, HDV, Color
Spanish and English with English subtitles

As part of its new policy to end the “catch and release” of undocumented immigrants, the U.S. government opened the T. Don Hutto Residential Center in May 2006 as a prototype family detention facility. The facility is a former medium-security prison in central Texas operated by the Corrections Corporation of America, the largest private prison operator in the country. The facility houses immigrant children and their parents from all over the world who are awaiting asylum hearings or deportation proceedings. As information about troubling conditions at the facility leaks out, three activist attorneys seek to investigate and address the issues. The Least of These explores the role—and limits—of community activism in bringing change, and leads viewers to consider whether core American rights and values should apply to immigrants, particularly children.


Mature audiences

MACC, Monday April 27, 6 PM

Directors Clark Lyda and Jesse Cunningham, along with Barbara Hines (UT School of Law) and Lisa Graybill (ACLU), in attendance




Clark Lyda is a first-time filmmaker from Austin, TX. He formed Glass House Productions in 2007 with partner Jesse Cunningham to produce documentary and narrative films focused on promoting change through informing and entertaining. Jesse Cunningham is originally from Lynchburg, VA and has been involved in a number of productions and short films as an actor, but The Least of These is his first full-length documentary. Jesse splits his time between Austin and New York.

Producer: Marcy Garriott, Clark Lyda, Jesse Lyda
Cinematographer: John Fiege
Editor: Amy Foote
Music: Adrian Quesada, Explosions in the Sky, Temporary Residence