Letter to the Editor: Art students respond to departure of art teacher Bruno Baran

These letters are in response to the article, “Students reflect on loss of art teacher.” To read the original article, click here.

I have only known Mr. Baran for a few short months, but me and my fellow students truly felt the loss of Mr. Baran. He was always there to guide us in our art projects and never failed to improve our day. I am thoroughly disappointed with the school’s handling of the firing of our teacher. I completely and entirely understand the school’s reasoning behind keeping the cause of Mr. Baran’s firing a secret; but because of their lack of closure, rumors continue to fly around the school with little proof and no way to disprove them. The school has simply told us that all of the rumors they have heard are “not true,” pushing the students to continue onward with their guessing game. The school hasn’t realistically addressed these rumors. They haven’t told us which ones are true, simply the ones “they heard” are not true. These rumors will continue to fly around the school, chipping away at what little dignity the school has left Mr. Baran with, until either the truth is found through unorthodox means or a “false truth” is held to be true. I strongly believe that the school needs to address this issue before it gets even more out of hand than it already has.

Sophomore Matthew Foulk

Art is one of the things that make me who I am. Through art, I have become the person I am now and have discovered aspects of myself I didn’t know existed. Studio is not just a class I take because I had to choose an elective, but rather a time for me to express my creativity and be my authentic self. An hour of drawing seems to pass by in mere minutes. Drawing can be a mental break from reality, a strategy to deal with the stress of life. What used to be another school class has transformed into a time that I hold very dear and appreciate everyday. It was the highlight of each school day. Art is a passion that I can only hope everyone has the opportunity to experience.

Teachers are the educators of the future generation and hold a most important role in shaping our youth into successful, driven young men and women. It is not easy to find teachers who truly care about each and every one of their students. Mr. Baran was one such teacher. He wasn’t just one of my teachers, but he had also become a friend.

The art room is a place where students can go on their off mods or at lunch to paint or draw, or even to escape the stress of school. Now the room no longer feels like the same art room. It no longer houses the source of joy and understanding and acceptance that Mr. Baran brought. Studio is now a source of hurt, and it has become sad for me to enter.

Studio was once my favorite class of all because of Mr. Baran and my classmates. Not only was he a great teacher, but his “eccentric” personality made everyone love him, along with his sense of humor. Our class was special because, together, we came to realize he went above and beyond for all of us: planning field trips, coordinating events, organizing the art show, filling the walls with our artwork. Aside from inspiring his students, he was also an accomplished artist. He traveled on weekends competing in painting competitions. I remember the first day of Studio 1. The entire class was silent, shy and timid. I never would have imagined loving studio so much. Studio class now is like a family, all helping each other out.

I still can’t grasp the fact that I won’t be taught by my favorite teacher any longer. It feels weird walking into the art room, without being greeted by Mr. Baran’s cheerful demeanor. The art room was turned upside down, and within one weekend John Carroll did not feel like the same school I have gone to since freshman year. No more crazy studio classes, no more coffee throughout the day, no more laughing at the endless jokes, no more Mr. Baran. These are all things that my classmates and I will miss dearly.

Junior Studio 3 student Delaney Link