John Owens

Confessions of a Bad Teacher

The Shocking Truth from the Frontline of American Public Education

Sourcebooks 2013

New Books in American StudiesNew Books in EducationNew Books in Peoples & PlacesNew Books in Politics & SocietyNew Books in Public PolicyNew Books Network October 10, 2016 Trevor Mattea

As you spend more time working in one role, organization, or field, it can become easy to lose perspective on how your work is...

As you spend more time working in one role, organization, or field, it can become easy to lose perspective on how your work is similar or different from that being done by people in other positions, places, and industries. How are you asked to spend your time? How are you given feedback? How are you evaluated? Do your workplace norms make any sense? What would an outsider say about them? Because so many teachers enter the profession right out of college and either spend their entire careers in schools or leave within a few years, they are not often in the position to hear or offer these kinds of school critiques. In Confessions of a Bad Teacher: The Shocking Truth from the Frontline of American Public Education (Sourcebooks, 2013), John Owens describes his frustrations upon leaving the publishing industry after 30 years and pursuing a second career teaching high school English in a New York City public school at the height of the education reform movement.
Owens joins New Books in Education for the interview. To share your thoughts on the podcast, you can connect with him on Twitter at @JOwensTeacher.

During our conversation, he also recommended the following books:

Reign of Error: The Hoax of the Privatization Movement and Danger to America’s Public Schools by Diane Ravitch
The Death and Life of the Great American School System: How Testing and Choice Are Undermining Education by Diane Ravitch


Trevor Mattea is an educational consultant and speaker. His areas of expertise include deeper learning, parent involvement, project-based learning, and technology integration. He can be reached by email at info@trevormattea.com or on Twitter at @tsmattea.

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