John Manke is an active former Bay View resident who is involved in numerous neighborhood organizations, including the Bay View Historical Society, the Humboldt Park Fourth of July Association and the Shore Shore Farmers Market. He believes Bay View has a fine tradition in its past that we do not want to lose in the future.
Being the second youngest child in my family, I went to Bay View High School. One of my sisters had just graduated and another one was two years ahead of me. We had to purchase our books in high school. As long as they did not change to a new book in class, you could purchase a used one from a relative, neighbor or friend. A used book usually had a lot of note inside of key information needed in class. A new book had no such notes to help you. Each teacher had his or her own way of teaching a class. The secret of learning in school, was to take notes as the class went on. The teacher would usually base his tests on the notes that you took. Many times the book was not good for studying, due to the fact that the teacher would base his tests on what he told you, rather than what was inside of the book. This same rule applies to college.
After a few weeks, I was getting bored in school. Then I found a good outlet for my boredom. I joined the projection crew (movie crew). After the first semester in high school, I no longer had to go to study hall. As assistant manager of the movie crew, I got to used the projection crew room as an office to do my homework. Mr Williams shared this office, but he was never around to bother us much. I got to assign operators to show movies throughout the building. It was fun learning how to run the special auditorium movie projector. During lunch, I got to choose movies to show in the school auditorium. Biology films on disecting frogs, was one choice. Sometimes I would find a really good movie for the lunch period. Because I had a great teacher, Mr. Art Hickman, as my advisor, I was able to get special help slips to get people out of detention, providing that they did some needed work. Who wouldn't want to be able to serve his detention in a relaxing way, and they could watch any movie afterwards to finish up their time. We had a great bunch of people on the movie crew. After my term as manager, I was allowed to stay in my office and advise new members and management on procedures. No matter what I did, I could never get out of homeroom very much. Only when I was needed to show a movie in the auditorm for a school guest speaker, could I leave homeroom. I still had to attend all of my classes, except when I would be called for any problem on any movie equipment.
This was how I was able to relax and skip study hall in high school. When I graduated, I had a whole pocketful of hall passes and permission slips to get out of classes. I never needed to use them. The teachers knew me, and let me walk the halls whenever I needed to. This was my favorite memory of high school.