L.A. math teacher was inspiration for movie
The Washington Post
FILE - This March 16, 1988 file photo shows Jaime Escalante, center, teaching math at Garfield High School, in Los Angeles. Escalante is the teacher on which the character in the movie "Stand and Deliver" is based. Escalante died Tuesday March 30, 2010. he was 79. (AP Photo, File)
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By Jay Mathews
Wednesday, Mar 31, 2010
Jaime A. Escalante, the most famous and influential American public-school teacher of his generation, died March 30 of cancer at his son's home near Sacramento. He was 79.
A lively, wisecracking Bolivian who did not begin teaching in the United States until he was 44, Mr. Escalante transformed one of the lowest-performing high schools in the country into a model for raising the achievement of disadvantaged children. A 1988 film about his success, "Stand and Deliver," with Edward James Olmos playing the East Los Angeles math teacher, spread his story around the world and inspired teachers in hundreds of inner-city schools to copy his methods.
Mr. Escalante pioneered the use of Advanced Placement, a program of college-level courses and tests designed for high-achieving private schools, to raise standards in average and below-average public schools. His success at Garfield High School, where 85 percent of the students were low-income and few parents had more than a sixth-grade education, suggested that more time and encouragement for learning could trump educational disadvantages...link to complete article