The Teachers' Scrounge

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Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Book Review: High School Confidential...

Yuck. Pointless. Insincere. Self serving.

I think that about does it. So (allegedly), author Jeremy Iverson persuades a high school principal to allow him to attend classes for a semester as a high school senior. Then Jeremy (allegedly) documents the culture for a shocking look at teenage life in High School Confidential: Confessions of an Undercover Student. I call shenanigans. Oh, I believe he actually conned an administrator into letting him attend class, and I accept that he went to school acting as a high school senior. The rest, I believe, is more fantasy than documentary.

The students at "his" high school claim they all knew he was not "one of them." He admits that most of the stories are some sort of composite. Each student, teacher, security guard, and administrator fits perfectly into a stereotype. It doesn't seem that Iverson is surprised by anything he encounters. He invents a romantic rendezvous between a teacher and student, then justifies it in the end notes because statistics show that it happens.

This book was far too self-serving for my taste. I felt like Iverson was wasting a prime opportunity to gain insight into the teenage world. Instead he wanted to relive his high school years since he was always stuck in prep schools. That and he wanted to write a bestseller.

Put it on the shelf next to A Million Little Pieces -- a novel based on a handful of actual events.

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