New teacher Mr. Bhatti finds students, colleagues hard working with high expectations


Throwing open the door, Mr. Hasham Bhatti walks in twirling a lanyard with his keys on it.  As always, he’s playing with some object or doing something just a little quirky. He then starts talking about a Kanye West album to the class, just as casually as friends would talk.

Bhatti teaches AP Language and Composition, ESL and English I.  This is his first year as a teacher for Hinsdale Central after  tutoring in downtown Chicago for a number of years. He has taught at both Elk Grove High School and Stevenson High School. For him, coming to Central has been a huge culture shock.

“There’s a focus here on a really high level of education,” Bhatti said.  “Students come to class and expect you to deliver the best every day.  They have really high, very reachable goals, and they look forward to you coming to class, not just prepared, but on top of your game. At other schools that I have been at, students will just take what you give them.”

Bhatti previously worked in an intervention program for students doing poorly in English.  Since there is a large difference between teaching an interventional style course and AP classes, Bhatti has much different problems to deal with on a regular basis.

“The students that I have worked with [before teaching at Central] were in gangs;  those things are not  in the realm of possibility here.  That’s obviously a very good thing,” Bhatti said.

In addition to the differences within the students, Bhatti also notices a big difference among Central staff, specifically teachers.

“The faculty is all very high caliber, great people to work with.  That’s another big difference I’ve found right away.  It’s not just one teacher doing something innovative; it’s the majority of the staff,” Bhatti said.

Many of Bhatti’s students appreciate the unique way he conducts his classes. Mustafa Baridi, junior and a student of Bhatti, enjoys Bhatti’s eccentric personality and teaching style.

“Mr. Bhatti is definitely a unique personality, but I feel that his personality makes it much easier to relate to him the classroom.  That makes it a much more interesting class, and very easy to learn,” Baridi said.

“He’s a great teacher who really makes an effort to build a rapport with his students and create a very engaging yet educational class setting,” said Samrita Sawney, junior.