Chalking the Profession: Unintended Lessons about Teaching


  • Jacqueline Bach
  • Jennifer Jolly


Chalk, a mockumentary about teaching, goes against the more mainstream portrayal of teachers as educators as heroes. It employs the post-modern strategies of the mockumentary to challenge the notion that teachers in the cinematic world quit, are fired, or persevere in the profession because of one or a series of life-changing events. Chalk's use of the mockumentary to examine teaching complicates the ways other school films portray teaching. In order to discuss this engagement, we turn to post-modern curriculum theory to explain how high school films can make meaningful representations about students, schools, and in the case of this film, some of the reasons why 50% of teachers quit during the first three years. 

Author Biographies

Jacqueline Bach

Jacqueline Bach is an assistant professor of English Education and Curriculum Theory at Louisiana State University and a former high school English teacher. She is a co-editor of The ALAN Review.  


Jennifer Jolly

Jennifer L. Jolly, Ph.D. is an assistant professor in elementary and gifted education at Louisiana State University. She also serves as editor of NAGC's Parenting for High Potential. Before her tenure at LSU, she taught in both gifted and regular education classrooms as a public school teacher.






Cultural Studies and Curriculum