Gr 6-10 Tenth-grader Paul enrolls in lower Manhattan's Don Carey High (a.k.a. Don't Care High) when his family moves from a small town in Canada. Machiavellian classmate Sheldon plots with Paul to stir things up among the apathetic students and staff in a school where ``everyone's ambition is Christmas vacation.'' The boys nominate friendless oddball Mike Otis as Student Council President without his consent and fashion in his name a powerful, charismatic leader who makes Don't Care High care very much. In this would-be satire, there are some clever bits: the feudal ``Locker Baron'' who extorts junk-food payments for combinations in prime locations, the student who is a slave to a terrible addictionlicorice. Other titles of this genreStanley Kiesel's affectionately mad The War Between the Pitiful Teachers and the Splendid Kids (Dutton, 1980) and Daniel Pinkwater's satisfying tour-de-force Young Adult Novel (Crowell, 1982), succeed. Here readers are not persuaded to suspend disbelief. Having missed its mark, the book becomes merely outrageous and offensive. In the characterizations, stereotypes and stick figures abound. The hero instigators are flat personalities for all their rushing about. What makes the pathetic Mike Otis tick is never explained. All of the adultsparents, teachers, etc.are well-intentioned incompetents or utter fools. Most seriously, in the interest of motivating, the story applauds stealing of confidential records, vandalism and physical violence. Libby K. White, Schenectady County Public Library, N.Y.