The story “I Just Wanna Be Average” was written by Mike Rose about his high school education and everything that went along with it. He starts off talking about how he was accidentally placed in vocational education due to a mix up of him and another student with the same last name. Although Rose was quite intelligent he was forced to sit in classes that were simplified and did not challenge him. Due to this fact he spent the first two years of high school paying more attention to the people around him than to his actual school work. He talks about each of his friends that shared the vocational classes with him and how they got into trouble and how they steered him in the wrong direction. Rose talks about how his parents were unaware of what was going on and he simply lived out his time in vocational learning how to look like he belonged there. Several times he helped his friends cheat so that they could receive better grades and pass some classes. The most influential thing he heard someone day throughout this time was a student that said that he just wanted to be average. This was because he was in a set of classes that were for students that were less than average and he just wanted to be able to be average and fit in.
Once someone realized that he did not belong in the vocational education program he was soon switched over to college preparation courses. After two years of being in simple classes where he learned to doze off he was thrown into a fast pace hard schedule of classes. This proved to be quite a challenge for him because he was behind everyone else and had to work extra hard to try and pass his classes. Rose soon came upon a very influential teacher who had a great impact in his life. This teacher got him to pay attention and actually like school again. He also helped Rose get into college which he was not planning to attend. Rose talks about how much he learned from being in two different types of classes and how this affected his life in the long run.
This story helps to show the audience how education is in two different sections. It also seems to show how just one error can completely change everything. To me it seemed as though Rose grew because of this mix up and learned to be better because of it. He took his experience and used it to his benefit and to the benefit of others around him. Having his teacher help him to realize his passion and to help him get to a better future was one of the best things that could have happened to him. I can relate to his main point of the story as in just wanting to be average because sometimes, especially in high school, it is better to just be average and fit in than to stick out and have people look at you differently.