Fish Gaucho: Siege of the Haters!
I drew this earlier in the week, but it’s pretty relevant. Note how Fish Gaucho doesn’t have any support, doesn’t have her motorcycle, doesn’t have her knife. Notice those faceless minions shooting some kind of machine guns at her, while she tries to grab that cube, which seems kind of important.
Knowing that my co-teacher and I would be absent, this is how I envisioned the day. I was not wrong. The staff has informed me, while I was gone, that our students decided that “Lord of the Flies” territory was the way to go.
The meeting went well, though. I say meeting because it wasn’t in fact, the bona fide interview. The people we met were friendly, and about the right kinds of things. They were impressed with our drive, expertise, and energy. They like our student work samples, and our curriculum development ideas. When they had us interact with students, it was time to shine.
As a result, they expressed enthusiasm on “making it work,” and set a legit interview panel with demo lesson for May 9th. We will see how that goes. With political and bureaucratic problems on the horizon…a typical thing for Pilot Schools…it might not matter all that much how well it goes anyway.
Despite this discouragement, it was positive, and they do seem to want to hire us. There are just hoops to go through. It did provide a revelation for us, though. The students were well behaved, soft spoken, self motivated and kind. There was no tagging, and no trash everywhere. Kids enjoyed explaining things, or getting feedback from adults. I didn’t hear a single curse word, and no students were out of uniform…they don’t need a uniform rule.
School doesn’t have to be what we have experienced. Having only taught, or observed, at inner city schools in serious conflict and late stage gang infestation…I have never actually seen a school run any other way than the kinds of places where I have worked. It was a huge revelation, and has dictated much of my thought now about the future.
I had discussion with young people about cloning, DNA, the writing process, karma, and the thoughts of Jean Paul Sartre. The intellectual reward of those few hours may have been larger than my entire semester thus far at my own school site. When I asked about management problems, such as the kind happening in my absence, both kids and adults looked at me like I was crazy.
I worry that somehow I have seen the Promised land, and won’t be let in.
A week and a half, True Believers.