Esme Raji Codell has come to teach. And she's not going to let incompetent administrators, abusive parents, gang members, weary teachers, angry children, dim-witted principals, or her own insecurities get in the way of delivering the education her fifth-grade students deserve. Fresh mouthed and miniskirted, Esme can be both pig-headed and generous, churlish and charming. As she embarks on her first year teaching in an inner-city public school, she quickly becomes a thorn in her principal's side. A twenty-four-year-old teacher with the enthusiasm of a ten year old, Esme too dedicated to give up - and too young to know better.
In Educating Esme, the uncensored diary of her first year, we find this irrepressible teacher wearing costumes in the classroom, dancing with the kids during rallies in the auditorium, roller-skating down the hallways, and putting on rousing performances with students in the library.
Not just for educators and parents, this poignant and often hilarious chronicle gives voice to anyone who has ever had an irritating boss, struggled to be an individual in a bureaucratic abyss, given 105 percent without getting thanked, and yet cared so much.