1. The Teacher Who Stood Up and Spoke Out

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About this Episode

The Essential School Sucks, # 1 of 50

Theme One: The Real Problems With Public School

A monologue about the courageous life and work of John Taylor Gatto, and the story of how he changed my life.

How many teachers reluctantly acknowledge the failure of mass compulsory schooling? How many become disheartened but then relegate themselves to quiet conformity? How many hunt for the villains, but simply wind up sniveling behind the closed doors of the teachers’ lounge, choosing to blame children and parents?

If you've worked in or around the public schools - or even if you simply endured the requisite 15,000 hours as a student - you're likely able to form some rough estimations for these questions.

Yet how powerful is the voice of the teacher with the conviction to take action and speak out?

In 1991, at the dawn of the information age, John Taylor Gatto was named the New York State Teacher of the Year. Within months of receiving that recognition he resigned, quite publicly, in the op-ed section of the Wall Street Journal. At this time, John was in his mid-fifties. He had a family. He had little savings, and he resided on the notoriously not-affordable island of Manhattan. It was a bold move to say the least, but it marked the beginning of a beautiful new career in education.

And he inspired many others to cut their own divergent paths.

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Originally Released November 1, 2018 As "Episode 584: Thank You John Taylor Gatto"

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