There's a certain type of bitter nerd who takes extreme pleasure in proving that they are smarter than their teachers. Based on an article today where they lace into a principal with terrible grammar, we take it that the Daily News was one of those nerds. Not that they don't have a point however: Principal Andrew Buck of the Middle School for Art and Philosophy wrote an incoherent, rambling mess of an email to staff, defending his policy of not providing textbooks. But, who the hell expects coherency from an art and philosophy manager!
The email, titled "Principal's Reflection," is filled with Michael Scott-isms, nonsense phrases, and about 50 errors of grammar and logic, according to News "experts." In the letter, Buck wrote: "Text books are the soup de jour, the sine qua non, the nut and bolts of teaching and learning in high school and college so to speak...just because student have a text book, doesn't mean she or she will be able to read it...Additionally students can't use a text book to learn how to learn from a textbook." This pretzel logic is quite hard to follow (read a bit here), unless Buck was going for a Dadaist statement on the inarticulate quest for knowledge.
"The letter is a confusing mess. The grammar is horrible...It's as though each paragraph is not related to the one that comes before or after. I think he's just trying to make excuses for not buying books," said Alan Ettman, who has taught English at DeWitt Clinton High School in the Bronx for 26 years. Buck has been principal at the school since 2007, but is not tenured; hilariously, he was voted the "least trustworthy" principal in Brooklyn by the teachers union in 2008. That is a real thing.
For his part, Buck emailed the News that the school had plenty of textbooks, and defended his writing: "I often correspond with teachers on educational issues to enhance communications and generate discussion."