I Heartily recommend Bill Hoatson's book. It contains wisdom acrrued by a supurb and committed teacher over many years of experience in some of the country's most challenging classrooms. He testifies to the effectiveness of the caring development of self-respect together with goal-directed discipline, an approach he supports by proven strategies with real kids with real discipline problems. Both his writing and his informative lectures are witty, insightful and wonderfully entertaining.
Emanuel Shargel
Professor Emeritus, College of Education, Florida State University

Bill's Books

Support and learn about Bill's efforts to instill his humane and effective teaching methods, in the home and in the school, by purchasing one of his books.

Transform the school, transform society.


The absolute joy of reading

The Absolute Joy of Reading

Tallahassee Democrat 

Gadsden County Times 

Schools Should Save the Child First

Schools Should Save the Child First

Gadsden County Times 

Repurposing schools to save young men.

Crime rates, whether going up or down, are always too high and usually center around young, angry, disaffected males. This is nothing new. You can go back to the fifties and watch movies warning society about juvenile delinquents or go back to the forties and watch the Bowery Boys run amok or go way back and read a priceless quote from Aristotle saying that teenagers are going to be the ruin of society. Angry, disaffected, alienated, purposeless young men have always and will always be a problem to society so how about we actually do something about it in a positive way?

Website Under Repair

I want to apologize to anybody who has tried to access this website recently. As you may have noticed, it has been frozen in time for quite awhile. I have been having huge problems with my publisher and have been working feverishly to get my books into the hands of a good one. (Self-publishers beware, there are more land mines in self-publishing than along the Korean border.) So, for right now, please don't try and purchase a book.

Bless teachers everywhere.

I had the privilege of peeking in on a graduation ceremony this week and it is truly inspiring to see the pride in the parents towards their children that have struggled so hard and so long to get their diplomas. My hat goes off to the graduates and their families. They have earned this wonderful moment. My hat also goes off to all of the teachers in a child’s life that made this moment possible. Take the time to enjoy it, because moments like this will keep you in the classroom during the times that you really wish that you weren’t.

Multi-purpose schools.

Summer is fast approaching and hordes of school children will soon be heading to the beach, which has led me to assess my thoughts on the purpose of public schools. There has been a large push lately to view the top purpose of schools as mainly job-training. Job preparation is indeed an important reason to go to school, but from a societal stand point, there are other very important things that can be taught to children that would greatly benefit both the child and the community.

Ecomics and school

There is an invisible hand in the background of almost nearly every school problem. A list of serious problems would include the re-segregation of a lot of schools, along not just racial lines, but more importantly, along class (money) lines. There are millions of children that show up unprepared for the academic demands of school. There are lots of children that exhibit severe behavior problems. The turnover rate among teachers is getting serious. Many teenagers don’t graduate because of academic failure. Many young people don’t graduate because of incarceration.

Let guidance counselors guide

Why do some children from poverty or stressed backgrounds struggle so hard in school and what can be done to help them succeed in life? These are the two questions that I have spent most of my adult life trying to answer and they are not idle questions. Every so-called “F” school in this country is anchored in communities of economic stress and I know that the school building itself is not the problem, because good teaching could go on in a gravel pit, if need be. What is it inside that child that needs attending to that is holding him or her back?

Mistakes are priceless knowledge

From a teacher’s point of view, a child’s academic mistakes are worth their weight in gold. I really, really wish that they wouldn’t be punished. Corrected, yes; punished, no. If a child is punished for making mistakes on a sheet of paper, either through bad grades, scolding or just simple disapproval (and coming from a respected adult, there is nothing simple about that disapproval), the child is going to go to great lengths to avoid punishment. It is human nature.

A paraprofessional in every classroom

If the state of Florida is serious about helping each child succeed in school and reaching their full potential as an adult, it needs to conduct business radically different. I propose that the hundreds of millions of dollars being wasted on high-stakes testing and other gifts to private corporations instead be plowed into putting a well-trained Paraprofessional (Teacher’s aide) in every classroom, in every school.


You begin to wonder if you are ever going to get out of school when you realize: no, you're not. Your students will graduate eventually but you are stuck there in some kind of time warp, always being told what to do, always answering to the adults above you. It's strange being treated like a kid when you're fifty.
Professor Johnson Unhinged - Section on Teaching

7 Minute Lecture Series


01. Introduction
(7 minute Lectures)

02. How to Create a Dropout
(Positive Behavior Shaping)

03. The Phone Call
(Reward Effort)