“School’s Out”, also known as “School’s Out for Summer” is a 1972 title track single released on Alice Cooper’s fifth album.
Cooper has said he was inspired to write the song when answering the question, “What’s the greatest three minutes of your life?”. Cooper said: “There’s two times during the year. One is Christmas morning, when you’re just getting ready to open the presents. The greed factor is right there. The next one is the last three minutes of the last day of school when you’re sitting there and it’s like a slow fuse burning. I said, ‘If we can catch that three minutes in a song, it’s going to be so big.'”
Cooper has also said it was inspired by a line from a Bowery Boys movie. On his radio show, “Nights with Alice Cooper”, he joked that the main riff of the song was inspired by a song by Miles Davis. Cooper admitted that guitarist Glen Buxton was the one who created the song’s opening riff.
The lyrics of “School’s Out” indicate that not only is the school year ended for summer vacation, but ended forever, and that the school itself has been blown up. It incorporates the childhood rhyme, “No more pencils, no more books, no more teachers’ dirty looks” into its lyrics. It also featured children contributing some of the vocals. “Innocence” in the lyric “…and we got no innocence” is frequently changed in concert to “intelligence” and sometimes replaced with “etiquette.” The song appropriately ends with a school bell sound that fades out.
Later performances saw Alice Cooper incorporate parts of the first verse in “Another Brick in the Wall, Part 2”, a song by Pink Floyd (also about school, and produced by Bob Ezrin) into “School’s Out.”