"In the tradition of the classic Up The Down Staircase comes an unforgettable book about a year inside a troubled New York City school. In a fit of idealism, Ed Boland left a twenty-year career as a non-profit executive to teach in a tough New York City public high school. But his hopes quickly collided headlong with the appalling reality of his students' lives and a hobbled education system unable to help them: Jay runs a drug ring for his incarcerated brother; Nee-cole is homeschooled on the subway by her brilliant homeless mother; and Byron's Ivy League dream is dashed because he is undocumented. In the end, Boland isn't hoisted on his students' shoulders and no one passes AP anything. This is no urban fairy tale of at-risk kids saved by a Hollywood hero, but a searing indictment of reform-minded schools that claim to be progressive but still fail their students. Told with compassion, humor, and a keen eye, Boland's story will resonate deeply with anyone who cares about the future of education. "--
Prologue: Chantay -- The good ol' days -- Best practices -- Nemesis -- Nowhere over the rainbow -- Powers of ten -- Sweet Jesús -- Lord Byron -- Free Freddy! -- My funny Valentina -- Old school -- Lil' Mickey, a disciple of soul -- The ivy curtain -- Massacre of the innocents -- Point of no return -- Pomp and circumstance -- Epilogue: A message to Charles
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