This Gonna Be on the Test, Miss?
A solo show written and performed by Ronna J Levy, directed by Tyler Spicer, and based on the true stories in a remedial English community college classroom
“‘This Gonna Be on the Test, Miss?” is a solo show that has been 20 years in the making. 20 years ago I detoured from acting into academia.
I became so frustrated trying to explain what I teach (Remedial English is for dummies, right?) and more particularly whom I teach (What do you mean your students don’t do the work or buythe book or sleep in class?), and bumping against our cultural narrative, characterized by a Hollywood portrayal of the clichéd ghetto high school student. I figured the best way to explain myself would be through the powerful medium of storytelling, more specifically the solo show.
“‘This Gonna Be on the Test, Miss?” is based on the true stories from my 20 years teaching Remedial English in community college classrooms both in Los Angeles and New York City. Meet my students as I present classroom situations and characterizations of the academically underprepared and socio-economically disadvantaged students who are often misunderstood, represented by statistics, and portrayed as clichéd ghetto caricatures.
My students have always inspired me to tell their stories, their follies, their successes. But on a deeper level, the issues surrounding education and class and economics have compelled me to give a voice to this adult student population that is virtually voiceless, to make visible an academic environment that is virtually invisible. I have to tell this story, not the Hollywood story of the clichéd ghetto students, not the story behind sensational headlines: NCLB, standard tests, and teacher evaluations, but the story of real students, real lives.
Now is the time to tell this story. The story of higher education you don’t know; the story you need to know.