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ISBN: 9781250069382320 Pages
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A New York Times Editors' Choice
"Keizer writes eloquently and perceptively . . . More than just thoughtful, reasonable, carefully observed, elegantly written, and deeply humane, this book is also that rare thing, a work of genuine wisdom."-Chicago Tribune
Perhaps no profession is so constantly discussed, regulated, and maligned by non-practitioners as teaching. The voices of the teachers themselves, however, are conspicuously missing. Defying the trend, teacher and writer Garret Keizer takes us to school in this arresting chronicle of his return to the same rural Vermont high school where he taught fourteen years ago.
Much has changed since then-a former student is his principal, standardized testing is the reigning god, and smoking in the boys' room has been supplanted by texting in the boys' room. More familiar are the effects of poverty, the exuberance of youth, and the staggering workload that technology has done as much to increase as to lighten. At once fiercely critical and deeply contemplative, Getting Schooled exposes the obstacles that teachers face daily-and along the way takes aim at some cherished cant: that public education is doomed, that the heroic teacher is the cure for all that ails education, that educational reform can serve as a cheap substitute for societal reform.
Kirkus Reviews Best Books of the Year
You go back, Jack, do it again.—Steely Dan
In the fall of 2010, after a fourteen-year hiatus from the classroom and at the unpropitious age of fifty-seven, I began a one-year job filling in for a teacher...