1 9 8 6 – 1 9 9 1 (USA)
112 x 30 minute episodes
1 x 60 minute episode
Created by Michael Elias and Rich Eustis, and based upon Eustis’s personal experiences as a substitute teacher in New York City, this ABC sitcom starred Howard Hesseman (the former Dr Johnny Fever on WKRP in Cincinnati) as Charles Moore, a substitute teacher at Fillmore High School.
Moore is hired to take over the Individual Honors Program (IHP) class, teaching a class of gifted children of varying ages. Although Moore’s students are book-smart enough, he soon realises they have a lot to learn about life and makes it his mission to expose them to certain of life’s realities.
Fillmore’s principal, Dr Harold Samuels, does not appreciate Moore’s non-academic approach and often becomes a stumbling block that the teacher and his students have to circumvent. All Dr Samuels cares about is that Moore’s students win the city’s Academic Olympics contests.
The school’s assistant principal, Bernadette Meara, does what she can to support Moore.
Moore’s class members include the grade-obsessed Maria Borges, nerdy Arvod Engen, preppy and pretty Darlene Merriman, book-loving Simone Foster, exchange student Jawaharlal Choudhury, heartthrob Alan Pinkard, brainy tough guy Eric Mardian, art-loving Sarah Nivens, heavyset science fiend Dennis Blunden, 12-year-old prodigy Janice Lazorrotto, fast-talking TJ, horny Alex Torres, normal Viki Amory, artistic Aristotle McKenzie and Jasper Kwong.
In 1990 Charlie left and Scottish substitute teacher Billy MacGregor took over as Head of the Class.
MacGregor was played by the funniest man on the planet, Scottish comedian and all-round nice guy, Billy Connolly who went on to his own spin-off series in 1992, simply called Billy, which saw him enter into a marriage of convenience just to stay in America.
In 1998, Head of the Class became the first American television series to film an episode in the Soviet Union.
Dr Harold Samuels
William G Schilling
Michael De Lorenzo
Jonathon Ke Quan