I was subbing in an exclusive high school district in the suburbs of Chicago. It had five schools. Four of them had received some presidential award for excellence in Education. I think Regan started that. So I was always kind of suspicious of that. Based on what standard? What did they measure?
I was hungry with curiosity.
And I was going to infiltrate it, to find out what made these schools so special.
(Why is it that I must be forced to have 2 spaces between paragraphs when I am the one who wants to determine how many spaces I want to put there? Another WordPress blunder. But I guess you have to Go Premium to be able to do that.
So I talked to a really handsome and laid-back principal. He was all about the experience of education, how you learned didn’t matter, as long as you learned. I could just as easily seen him living on a farm than managing a 3000-plus student body. He didn’t appear to be bookish. Didn’t take much stock in that. Rather he had this broad perception of learning. Learning wasn’t tied to a desk. Learning was about soaring to places you’ve never been to before. That was the point.
So I was subbing at another school in the District. Doing Art. Which is always a lot of fun. Art students are so obviously different. They wear funky clothes and paint their hair funky colors. The perfect fit for me. So I was walking around the class, observing them, when I suddenly stopped, and said, “Oh, my God. Who is that? I love them!” The student told me the name, which doing so in my case is totally pointless since I will never remember it, which I immediately forgot. It was the music that was possessing me at that moment. It was perfect! It was at the exact point where I was in my life then. And before that. And before that.
A born rebel.
So we listened to them for the rest of the day. We played it pretty loud. But we were also set apart from the “serious” students.
It was like being in Nirvana.
Best experience ever.