Page 6 THE EVERETT ADVOCATE – FRiDAy, MAy 17, 2024 Author chronicles life as substitute teacher at Everett High Barry Norman discusses “Confessions of a Grateful Substitute Teacher” By Tara Vocino A seasoned professional from the fi lm, TV and music industries – after selling a Maine-based movie theater – found himself in an unplanned return to the workforce due to the challenges brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic and published a book regarding his experiences as a substitute teacher at Everett High School. Barry Norman, 66, wrote “Confessions of a Grateful Substitute Teacher” (released on May 8), using pseudonyms when describing interactions with actual students, staff and teachers. “I wanted to protect students’ privacy, but what we’re dealing with is universal,” Norman said in an interview at Panera Bread in Saugus on Sunday afternoon. “Regarding the district’s diversity, some students come from immigration camps and have serious Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.” As Norman delved into this Mid-grade Regular $3.95 3.35 73 68 Over 45 Years of Excellence! Full Service $3.15 Order online at angelosoil.com unexpected role, he discovered that the high school he joined is the fourth most diverse in the state, boasting a rich tapestry of students from Central and South America, Haiti and Vietnam. Other ways that non-Everett readers can relate are: some students aren’t dressed for colder weather since they come from poor families, and they get depressed before vacation time since their best meal is at school, according to Norman. Norman said parents, paraprofessionals, students, principals and those who don’t work in nor live around education can connect with the book. “Universally, cellular phone and headphones have rewired these kids’ brains when school work bores them and then it’s back to watching TikTok videos,” Norman said. “Another thing students say is ‘I’m never going to need to know that.” Norman argues that all of life is math, and that he teaches critical thinking skills to train their brain. He doesn’t just babysit – Norman teachAuthor Barry Norman held up “Confessions of a Grateful Substitute Teacher” during an interview on Sunday afternoon at Panera Bread in Saugus. (Advocate photo by Tara Vocino) es math or science classes to all grade levels on a daily basis. General Education students can’t graduate from high school unless they pass math and science on the MCAS exam. Approximately 2,400 students attend Everett High School, which is built for a student body of 1,700. Wearing a “Skittles Collection,” or colorful attire from head to toe, he won Best Dressed last year – voted on by students. Norman has been teaching at Everett High School for three years, and he hopes to retire there at age 70. “It freaks students out to know that I’m older than some of their grandparents,” Norman said. “But I wake up at 9 a.m. to work out daily, and students say I don’t look my age.” NORMAN | SEE PAGE 7 Eastern Bank Building on Rte. 1S 605 Broadway, #301 * Saugus (781) 233-6844 www.bostonnorthdental.com Dr. Priti Amlani Dr. Bhavisha Patel * Restorative Dentistry * Cosmetic Dentistry * Implant Restoration * Zoom Whitening * Teeth in a Day - All on 6 * Invisalign * CEREC Crowns (Single Visit Crowns) * Root Canal Treatment * Sedation Dentistry ~ Full Mouth Rehabilitation ~ Before After

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