“Anybody in power can come and take away your life, they can take your wealth, they can take your freedom, but they can never take your education,” shares Bill as he recalls the lasting impact his grandmothers words has had on his teaching life. “…that really stuck with me and I thought, ‘Yeah, she’s right.’ They can stick me in a prison cell, they can keep me away from the people that I love, they can take all of my material wealth, but they can’t take what I’ve learned. And if I can’t play rock and roll guitar […] then I want to plant seeds, I want to grow gardens on these young impressionable minds and have them be the next change makers.”
Fast Facts about Bill
- Full name: William “Bill” Price
- Years teaching: 6
- Grade(s) taught:
- 2012-2012: Preschool
- 2014-2016: Lower Elementary, 1st-3rd
- 2016-present: Upper Elementary, 4th-6th
- Current position: Upper Elementary Montessori Co-Teacher
- Current city: Oakland, CA
- Favorite books:
- Favorite resources: Go to a recycle bin and dig out some art supplies to give students any means necessary to demonstrate understanding. Bring your instrument to work and your favorite books, share what you love with your kiddos.
- Why teach? My grandmother told me they can take away your freedom, your life, your wealth, and your family, but they can’t take way your education; I want to plant this seed.
Noteworthy Outtakes from Bill’s Chat
With a combination of his Boston grit, and his Oakland inspired civic pride, Bill courageously shares how stories from his underprivileged childhood has shaped his passion for teaching. From sharing about his father abandoning his blind mother to raise him and his sister, his poor upbringing and his use of those stories to connect with students – Bill’s emboldened vulnerability has delivered the most heartfelt chat with teachers yet.
Listen in as Bill encourages teachers to take risks in speaking to students about things like social justice and to engage with administration for support when needed. Bill is also a self-described “white, middle-aged, male career changer.” He talks about his admiration of lifelong teachers and their fluidity, while also recognizing his unique ability to understand the big picture scope of what lies ahead for his students in a variety of fields and life experiences.
Bill is also a devoted family man whose two children attend the public school he teaches. As a rather new charter school in Oakland, CA taking on bold moves towards transforming public education in a diverse community – Bill says his investment in the school is not just as an educator, but as a parent who “needs” the school to succeed for the sake of his children.
From the strong, yet empathetic way Bill connects with his students to the very real reasons he feels he owes his life’s work to his grandmother, Bill’s “rock and roll” personality is both engaging and warm.