Tom Sobol is one of the great educators of our time – a true teacher who never lost his deep connection to the classroom and his deep commitment to equitable, high-quality public education as he became a superintendent, a state policymaker, and a distinguished professor of education at Teachers College, Columbia University. I was privileged to know him in several of these roles and I learned always from his wisdom and his example, which is captured in this wonderful book. Read it and you will be enriched and enlightened.
Linda Darling-Hammond, Charles E. Ducommun Professor of Teaching and Teacher Education
In this wise and rewarding volume, Thomas Sobol looks backward over his distinguished career as an educational practitioner and leader and weaves a memoir that bridges poignant and powerful autobiographical narratives with discerning and critical professional reflections. He urges us to resist the simplistic solutions, the adversarial dogma, and the ideological narrowness that characterize so much of the school reform debate; and challenges us to remember—always—the intimate and relational processes of teaching and learning and all of the children who deserve to a productive and rewarding education.
Sara Lawrence Lightfoot, Emily Hargroves Fisher Professor of Education, Harvard University and author of The Good High School, Respect, and The Essential Conversation
At his core, Tom Sobol is a teacher. As Scarsdale School Board president during his superintendency, I learned with the other board members as Tom taught us his collaborative style was the way to get things done, and we learned that he loved the kids above all. Part memoir, part manual, this book teaches as it gives up Tom’s secrets of how and why he has been such a force for good in education.
Carl H. Pforzheimer III, Former President of the Scarsdale Board of Education
Scarsdale, New York
A wonderful account of a remarkable life, about a remarkable man committed to accomplishing the ultimate victory of Education for the Children of our Urban Cities.
Carlos Carballada, Former Chancellor of the New York State Board of Regents
Few teachers in my life have combined inspirational intellect with down to earth warmth and good humor as Tom Sobol has. He is a man one wants to emulate and befriend. The story he tells on these pages reveals how he grew into the teacher and leader so many of us have followed, and leaves one eager to pursue the vision of public schooling he articulates so well and with such evident joy.
Andrew Selesnick, Assistant Superintendent for Leadership Development and Human Resources
Chappaqua Central School District Chappaqua, New York