Edward Scott Ibur, an English teacher at , has recently released a new novel called Teacher of the Year.
The book is the first comedic novel written by a veteran middle-school English teacher. The book is a character driven novel about a teacher ensnared by No Child Left Behind and the ramifications of standardized testing pressure, a very timely topic given all the press and rancor over education.
Similar to the stylings of Catch 22, Lucky Jim, and Thank You for Smoking, Ibur uses brazen and cutting satire to relay the story of a middle-school teacher clinging to his career and dignity during a year spent in professional purgatory.
In the novel, seventh-grade English teacher, Scott Eisenberg, bears the brunt of his principal’s wrath through lousy evaluations and personal humiliation after a handful of his students fail the critical year-end state assessment.
Given the option of termination or probation, he agrees to work with three “interventionists”— an acrophobic Nepalese Sherpa, an inflexible retired army general and a streetwise hip-hop DJ who lays down the novel’s diverse soundtrack. Eisenberg recounts a year spent with these unlikely saviors both in and out of the classroom.
Ibur is the founder of the Gifted Writers Project, a writing program for middle school and high school students from all over St. Louis. Since 1997, more than 1,600 students have enrolled in the program. Ibur has also been a drummer/percussionist for nearly his entire life, which proved invaluable in writing Teacher of the Year as it features an eclectic array of more than 100 songs.
To find out more about Ibur and Teacher of the Year, check out his website.
This information was provided by Desiree Bussiere, Ibur's publicist.
Editor's note: An earlier version of this story incorrectly reported that Ibur was a teacher at Hixson Middle School.