Matt Damon says what I believe: (1) public school teachers are awesome if directed and FREE to encourage creativity and give each student what s/he needs – #$&*# teaching to the test, and (2) thinking they’re overpaid is completely laughable. I’m late to the party (he said this in 2011, but I just found it today). In this video, he thanks his mom, a professor of Early Childhood Education, and his awesome public school teachers. I have my own public school teacher goddess, Gaunzie Jembere, who I thank profusely in the acknowledgements of my book The Ethnic Project: Transforming Racial Fiction into Ethnic Factions. Two things among the many that Ms. Jembere taught me in PS156 (in Queens): (1) the world was literally open to me, a little black girl born in Brooklyn of immigrant heritage, and (2) I should feel free to explore it. Thanks, Ms. Jembere!