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Black Teacher

‘Black Teacher’

Season 1, Episode 15 -  Aired March 2, 2022

Dean, Cory and Keisa are excited when they get their first Black teacher, but Dean starts to worry they're getting special attention.

Quote from Adult Dean

[Mr. Brady is addressing the class while wearing a dashiki:]
Adult Dean: What in the Marcus Garvey...?
Mr. Brady: For the past few weeks, you've been studying The Odyssey, which is similar to the oral tradition of storytelling in many African cultures, like the Yoruba people of West Africa.
Adult Dean: He's going full Africa on Day 2?
Mr. Brady: Like the ancient Greeks, Africans passed down important history generation to generation through storytellers known as griots. These griots used different instruments, like these drums, to perform for and educate the village.
Adult Dean: Drums too? Oh, know your audience, man. This is a fiddle crowd.
[Mr. Brady starts drumming]
Brad: I'm a griot, too!
Adult Dean: I always wanted a Black teacher, but did he have to be so Black?


Quote from Kim

Mr. Brady: Well, I have to admit, I don't have a reputation for being the most subtle person.
Bill: You shouldn't have to be subtle when you're doing the right thing.
Kim: Hmm. That's right. Like Malcolm X.
Bill: Hey, if you're gonna start quoting that nonsense, you can take your leather glove and go to your room.
Kim: Okay. How about, "The time is always right to do what is right"? Is Dr. King more appropriate dinner conversation?

Quote from Adult Dean

Principal Cartwright: I'd like to introduce your new teacher. Please join me in welcoming Mr. Brady.
Adult Dean: He's Black?! I wanted to start singing the Negro National Anthem, but I didn't know the lyrics.
Girl: [to Dean] Do you know him?

Quote from Adult Dean

Mr. Brady: I understand you've been reading The Odyssey, so let's open up to Chapter 9 and talk about how Homer uses foreshadowing to advance the story.
Adult Dean: I couldn't believe it. We finally had our first Black teacher in the history of the school. It was a huge deal, which wasn't lost on my classmates either.
[fantasy: Cory and Keisa stand and raise their gloved fists to the sky as "Say It Loud, I'm Black & I'm Proud" plays]
Adult Dean: Okay, it probably wasn't that bad, but that's exactly how it felt.

Quote from Coach Long

Mr. Brady: Well, I wish all the parents were as enthusiastic as you all. There have been some thoughts about my teaching style.
Coach Long: Hmm, some thoughts.
Bill: Thoughts, huh?
Lillian: Well, that's not surprising. You're new to the South, and things can be a bit different down here. For example, uh, Cliff and I work at a somewhat... conservative office.
Coach Long: She mean White folks. We work with White folks.

Quote from Brad

Adult Dean: So much of our early lives are shaped by teachers. Outside of our parents, they can be our first role models. They pour so much into us, and still, teachers are basically strangers. As kids, we didn't even see them as people, and we definitely never thought about their personal lives, unless we had to.
Mrs. Anderson: Now, before we go, I wanted to let y'all know that, sadly, this will be my last week in class before my visit from the stork.
Brad: How is she even pregnant? Isn't she like 62?
Adult Dean: Mrs. Anderson was 30, but at that age, we thought all our teachers were ancient.
Mrs. Anderson: You'll meet your new teacher tomorrow, and I expect you to all be as wonderful to them as you have been to me.
Adult Dean: English class was pretty boring, but we loved Mrs. Anderson, especially pregnant Mrs. Anderson. The bigger her stomach got, the less homework she assigned. We were more excited about that baby than she was.
Brad: What are the odds we can get another pregnant lady in here? [all chuckle]

Quote from Adult Dean

Mr. Brady: I was reviewing Mrs. Anderson's grade book and noticed you all have excellent grades. Has anyone ever suggested you try out for the Knowledge Bowl team?
Cory: I got asked to try out for the basketball team.
Keisa: Track and field.
Dean: Nobody asked me to join any teams.
Mr. Brady: I see. Well, I've decided to hold a new round of tryouts so everyone can have the opportunity to earn a spot, and I think you all should consider trying out.
Adult Dean: It took most teachers a week to stop calling me "Cory," but Mr. Brady was already letting us know that he sees us. [Mr. Brady nods at Dean] And there it was. The first Black head nod. You just witnessed history, people.

Quote from Adult Dean

Mr. Brady: Before I announce the results, I want to thank everyone who showed up today and brought their A game. I've tallied all the scores, and the students who've earned a place on this year's Knowledge Bowl team are Keisa... Brett... Cory... Karen... and Dean. As the highest scorer, Dean, you'll be captain. Brad, you'll be the alternate. Congratulations to everyone.
Adult Dean: A team that was 100% White is now 60% Black. That's what we call reparations math.

Quote from Bill

Dean: I like Mr. Brady, but... [sighs] I was thinking maybe you could talk to him.
Bill: About?
Dean: Well, it feels like he's giving special attention to the Black kids, and some of my White friends are feeling left out.
Bill: You sneak a sip of the whiskey? 'Cause you're clearly not thinking right. You think those White kids felt bad about all the special attention they were getting from the White teachers?
Dean: I-I don't know. It feels like whenever he does something nice for us, everybody stares like... like they're mad.
Bill: People predisposed to hating gonna actively hate.
Adult Dean: Oh, man. He was almost the first dude to say "haters gonna hate."
Dean: And now me, Cory, and Keisa are all on the Knowledge Bowl team, and Brad got bumped.
Bill: Listen, you're not doing anything wrong, and neither is Mr. Brady. Seems to me like he's just trying to level the playing field.

Quote from Bill

Bill: Look, I'm just saying, I like the way you're shaking things up. These boys need to see that.
Adult Dean: [sighs] I asked my dad to talk him down, not radicalize him.
Cory: I got to say, those drums you brought to school were pretty cool, Mr. Brady.
Bill: Sounds like a great teaching tool. I may have to try it out myself someday.
Lillian: And I'm sure it will be very well-received, since you work at a Black university surrounded by Black people. You have a freedom at work that many of us at this table don't.
Bill: Now, that is true. I think the Good Lord saw fit to give me that job because he knew I didn't have the temperament to work in a more conservative office. Amen. [laughter]

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