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Award-winning authors to visit Dimensions Academy
“Why is it I feel I've known you so many years?"
"Because I like you, and I don't want anything from you.”
― Ray Bradbury, Fahrenheit 451
When Ray Bradbury wrote Fahrenheit 451, he could not have known some of his words would foreshadow a unique relationship between his biographer, Sam Weller, and a small school in Norman, Okla.
Dimensions Academy students have grown to know Weller, who was selected by the late Bradbury to write the story of his legendary life. He soon will visit Dimensions Academy for the third time in just two years because he has developed a personal connection with the students and has a strong desire to help them succeed. The school is part of the Norman Public School District and provides rigorous, individualized educational opportunities for students in alternative settings.
“Mr. Weller has taken a keen interest in helping our students explore their passions through literature and storytelling,” said Dimensions Academy Principal Paul Tryggestad. “It’s clear that he continues to provide amazing opportunities for our kids because he wants to. The only thing he wants in return is for them to succeed.”
Weller will partner with the school to facilitate a writing festival for the school May 10-12 to provide opportunities for students to interact with and learn from world-renowned authors from across the nation. Featured authors include Gillian Flynn, Gone Girl author and screenwriter, Elizabeth Crane, author of We Only Know so Much, and international award-winning author Rilla Askew. At least six authors will participate in the festival either in person or via social media.
“When I first visited Dimensions Academy, I was incredibly moved by the school’s mission, the students’ personal stories and the passion displayed by the teachers, administrators and staff,” Weller said. “These students have often overcome significant challenges and I keep coming back to show them how impressive they are and demonstrate that I believe in them.”
Weller says it’s criminal that today’s society often limits creativity in adults and hopes the writing festival will inspire students to think about their own passion and how the creative process can help them throughout life.
“Why should we have to grow up entirely?” Weller asks. “A creative mind is a fertile mind and the world needs lifelong learners. Dimensions Academy and Norman Public Schools are truly preparing their students to reach their full potential. And it’s exciting to be a part of that.”